Teaching Comparative Government and Politics

Monday, April 18, 2011

Cancel the reception

A coalition of left and right in the state of Mexico has been abandoned. Does that predict a PRI victory?

Prospective left-right political marriage fizzles in Mexico state
It's a maybe-possible marriage that has kept Mexico's political world aflutter: leftists and conservatives joining hands in a pivotal state before next year's presidential vote.

But the wedding is off.

After months of speculation, the parties will field separate candidates for governor in the state of Mexico, rather than team up against the reigning party there, the Institutional Revolutionary Party, or PRI.

The incumbent PRI governor, Enrique Pena Nieto, leads polls assessing the prospective field for the presidential run, and analysts say the gubernatorial race will help shape the presidential contest. Some saw an alliance of opposites as a way to beat the centrist PRI and slow Pena Nieto's momentum.

In the end, however, the bedfellows were apparently just too strange. Over the weekend, national leaders of the left-leaning Democratic Revolution Party, or PRD, facing a possible party split over joining with conservatives, formally voted down the idea.

The decision leaves a three-way contest in the July 3 election, probably helping the PRI at a key moment. Since the party's founding eight decades ago, it has never lost the governorship in Mexico state, which hugs Mexico City…

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