I am writing this month’s column following one of the most controversial U.S presidential elections in recent history. A President Trump was unimaginable for many in our country who have expressed shock at our national election results. Following the elections, our chamber has been barraged with questions on the impact of his administration on our businesses and on our trade relationship with our largest trading partner, Mexico.
I have been responding to media requests with a mixed reaction to a Trump administration. I’m in a unique position for many in the business community… I am a Hispanic woman running the largest Latino business organization in Arizona who works closely with Mexican businesses. The media is seeking my opinion on a candidate who spoke disparagingly about women, Latinos and Mexico during his campaign and who has now been elected by America. It is not an easy answer.
I am determined to be optimistic that Mr. Trump’s “business sense” will prevail. The U.S Hispanic market spends more than $1.5 trillion dollars a year and represents the fastest growing business segment in the nation with over 4.2 million Hispanic owned businesses. Mexico is one of the nations, and certainly Arizona’s largest trading partner and has been a key ally. It is my hope that Mr. Trump will see the folly of his words as he launches his presidency, and that his actions and administration will focus on job creation and our economy following the recent recession rather than divisive issues.
I’ve also been asked by the U.S media this week about my opinion on steps that Trump will need to take to rebuild relationships with the Hispanic community. As a new President, Mr. Trump will need knowledgeable domestic and international policy advisors. The appointment of Latino leaders to these roles and key cabinet positions would go a long way in repairing some of the damaged relationships with the Latino community. His words and initial policy decisions will be monitored closely by the Latino community.
A “Businessman – President” will bring an assumed opportunity for our businesses with an added focus on lessening regulation and the potential elimination of burdensome taxes. Mr. Trump spoke about “bringing business back to America” through a variety of tactics while campaigning, which resonated with many in the business community. In addition, many Americans voted for him because they feel frustrated with the economy, they feel socially left behind, and they are exercising the one power they have – their vote. It is my hope that we see a different person in a President Trump than we did as a Candidate Trump.
Our Tucson Hispanic Chamber will continue to advocate at the local and federal level for our business community and promote the importance of trade and tourism relationships with Mexico. Mexican businesses are welcome to join our chamber to learn more about doing business in Arizona. Learn more at www.TucsonHispanicChamber.org.
by Lea Marquez Peterson, President/CEO
Welcome to the Tucson Hispanic Chamber Blog Page.
Our goal is to help member companies grow and prosper. We work to achieve this goal by advocating a pro-business agenda in Tucson and connecting members with business leaders and policy makers. How? With Networking & educational events, and online initiatives — like this blog.