The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 70, July 1966 - April, 1967 Page: 665
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reached the point where California's ability to consume, plus
its earlier start in the effective use of the Colorado, gave its rep-
resentations in negotiations a tone of self-righteous indignation.
This further isolated her from sister states, including distant
Texas whose farmers along the lower Rio Grande were dependent
on water originating in Mexico and were thus unsympathetic to
California's position that Mexico, had no legal rights to the use
of water that fell in the United States.
With its future needs left unsatisfied by interstate negotia-
tions, California focused its attention on keeping to, a minimum
the volume of water guaranteed to Mexico by treaty. Her ag-
gressive, self-assured-even secretive-posture in earlier interstate
negotiations placed California in a disadvantageous position in
securing congressional support for opposition to the Depart-
ment of State's wartime, Good Neighbor oriented efforts to reach
a treaty acceptable to Mexico. In 1942 Munson J. ("Mike")
Dowd of the Imperial Irrigation District observed in a letter to
the then lobbyist Phil Swing, "With proper cooperation by in-
terests in the United States we can most definitely put the
'squeeze' on Mexico, but, I am very much afraid of our State
Department." This statement provides a good summary of the
situation that ultimately ended with international political con-
siderations taking precedence over the requirements of local
planning for urban and agricultural purposes.
This chronicle offers a nice contrast between Mexico and the
United States, in that planning for regional interests was handled
solely by the executive branch of the Mexican Government, while
in the United States the planning in this case of water distribu-
tion was done primarily at the local and state level, with the
legislature providing the major institutional vehicle at the na-
tional level for the protection of regional interests. Another
observation that can be made on the basis of this experience is
that while Mexico has, since 1848, relied on legal principles as
the only effective way to protect herself against the United States,
in this instance she broke away from strict legalism and agreed
to a treaty based on "cordiality and friendly cooperation" in
which, as the author repeatedly points out, the crucial aspects
are described in undefined phrases such as "extraordinary
drought" and "good" or "usable water."
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Texas State Historical Association. The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 70, July 1966 - April, 1967, periodical, 1967; Austin, Texas. (texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth101199/m1/697/: accessed September 22, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; crediting Texas State Historical Association.