Teaching Comparative Government and Politics

Monday, July 02, 2018

Third time a charm

Mexico's newly elected president has run for this office twice before. Will this result be a charm or another disappointment?

López Obrador, an Atypical Leftist, Wins Mexico Presidency in Landslide
Riding a wave of populist anger fueled by rampant corruption and violence, the leftist Andrés Manuel López Obrador was elected president of Mexico on Sunday, in a landslide victory that upended the nation’s political establishment and handed him a sweeping mandate to reshape the country…
AMLO, president of Mexico

The outcome represents a clear rejection of the status quo in the nation, which for the last quarter century has been defined by a centrist vision and an embrace of globalization that many Mexicans feel has not served them.

The core promises of Mr. López Obrador’s campaign — to end corruption, reduce violence and address Mexico’s endemic poverty — were immensely popular with voters, but they come with questions he and his new government may struggle to answer…

He won by capturing more than half the vote, according to early returns, more than any candidate since the nation began its transition to democracy nearly 20 years ago. In a reflection of the lopsided vote, his main competitors conceded the race within 45 minutes of the polls’ closing, another historical first.

With his coalition partners, it is likely that he will hold a majority in Congress, potentially giving him more power to enact his policies…

For his opponents, this election cycle has brought the three main parties of Mexico to a crisis point. Mr. Peña Nieto’s party will be vastly reduced in size and power in the new Congress, while the leftist Party of Democratic Revolution may not even survive.

Perhaps the only party with enough power to serve as a counterweight will be the National Action Party, despite having endured a bruising split in the campaign…

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