In place of police outriders, a half dozen television cameramen on motorcycles buzzed around Lopez Obrador's vehicle en route to a meeting with outgoing President Enrique Pena Nieto at the National Palace in the heart of Mexico City.
U.S. President Donald Trump and Mexico's next leader, Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador discussed immigration, trade and security issues in a phone call on Monday, the two mavericks beginning a dialogue amid strained relations between the neighbours.
The next president will also inherit a simmering dispute with U.S. counterpart Donald Trump over migration and trade, with talks to rework the North American Free Trade Agreement (Nafta) unresolved, pressuring Mexico's peso currency.
Trump has threatened to pitch North America into a costly trade war over Nafta, and his insistence that Mexico pay for his planned border wall has deeply angered many Mexicans. "Of course, I want him to win". "We will not be subject to any foreign government".
The American Action Forum found in a report on December 11 that outright withdrawal from NAFTA would cost United States consumers and businesses up to $7 billion annually in increased prices, and could also jeopardize 14 million jobs and threaten almost $1 trillion in North American trade. "This would be exceedingly harmful for the USA economy".
"Our dream, which we'll achieve regardless of whether Trump accepts or not, is that the Mexican can work and be happy where he was born", he said during a campaign event in the southern border city of Tapachula. "It is our main economic-commercial partner", Lopez Obrador said.
"Behind this exercise in democracy is the dignity and freedom of every human being, called to participate in social life", they said.
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He proposes paying low-income college students a $120 monthly allowance and setting up apprenticeships for students that would pay $180 a month.
Lopez Obrador also spoke of support for migrants and said the most forgotten and humble people of Mexico will be given preference in his government.
Since claiming victory on Sunday, the leftist politician has promised transformative change for Mexico. He pledged to pursue responsible economic policies, respect private property and guarantee individual liberties.
Lopez Obrador, the first leftist president since the end of one-party rule in 2000, won between 53 and 53.8% of votes, according to a quick count by the electoral authority, more than double the total for his nearest rival.
"I confess that I have a legitimate ambition: I want to go down in history as a good president of Mexico", said Lopez Obrador, who won after losses in the previous two elections.
That violence was on many minds as television stations carried live images of Lopez Obrador weaving through Mexico City's notoriously chaotic traffic in the front passenger seat of a compact vehicle that was at least five years old. He invested in infrastructure, built schools, and cut tax breaks to developers to gentrify the downtown.
One of his major promises is to eliminate corruption in the Mexican government.
"We are going to achieve a peaceful transformation, without violence", Obrador said. I would say, even better than anticipated, and I told him a number of years ago when I saw him campaigning for a different race, a different era, I said he'll be someday the president of Mexico.