"The United States and Mexico have a close and complex bilateral relationship, with extensive economic linkages as neighbors and partners under the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA). Bilateral relations are characterized by strong commercial and cultural ties and cooperation on a range of bilateral and international issues. In recent years, security issues have dominated the bilateral agenda, as the United States has supported Mexican President Felipe Calderón's campaign against drug trafficking organizations (DTOs) and organized crime. […] During its second session, the 111th Congress is likely to maintain an active interest in Mexico with counternarcotics, border, and trade issues dominating the agenda. To date, Congress has appropriated some $1.3 billion in assistance for Mexico under the Mérida Initiative, an anti-crime and counterdrug package first funded in FY2008, including $210.3 million in the FY2010 Consolidated Appropriations Act (P.L. 111-117). Congress is likely to maintain a keen interest in how implementation of the Mérida Initiative and related domestic initiatives to improve border security are proceeding, particularly as it considers the President's FY2011 budget request, which includes at least $341 million in assistance to Mexico, including $310 million in assistance accounts that have funded the Mérida Initiative. Congress may also be interested in how the Obama Administration moves to resolve the current trucking dispute with Mexico now that P.L. 111-117 would permit the resumption of a U.S.-funded pilot program for Mexican trucks. Congress may also consider proposals for comprehensive immigration reform."
CRS Report for Congress, RL32724