WASHINGTON--With booming cannons giving a 21-gun salute and full military honors, President Obama welcomed Mexican President Felipe Calderon to the White House for a state visit on Wednesday morning.
Joining them in the outdoor arrival ceremony--the first of the Obama administration--were First Lady Michelle Obama and Margarita Zavala, the former Mexican lawmaker who is Calderon's wife.
The ceremony was full of flourishes--including a U.S. Military fife and drum corps dressed in U.S. revolutionary-era garb. Obama and Calderon inspected the troops--from the five U.S. Military branches standing at attention in formation.
Obama called Calderon a "neighbor, friend and partner."
Calderon said the U.S. and Mexico can "overcome" challenges of major cross-border concerns, "migration," organized crime, and climate issues.
FOOTNOTE: Mrs. Obama wore a rasberry outfit from Calvin Klein.