Mexico: Looking to the Future After the Election

It’s been several weeks since our country elected a new president and now Mexico is looking to the future after the election. The pressure cooker is finally depressurized and we can safely say that this election in Mexico has been the most memorable in the modern history of Mexico.

A literal translation of what we experienced this summer is a “Tsunami Election.” According to the polling, 63 percent of the Mexican population voted in this year’s election on July 1st. We both saw it with our own eyes. Everybody wanted to vote this year. The excitement was in the air and It was contagious.

For the first time, the favorite candidate to win the Presidency of Mexico, Andrés Manuel López Obrador, better known as AMLO, won a landslide victory with over 53 percent of the vote.

It was a huge victory. No other candidate exceeded 22 percent of the vote. Ricardo Anaya, running for the PAN party, had 22 percent; the PRI party’s José Antonio Meade had 16 percent; and, Jaime Rodriguez (aka El Bronco) had just 5 percent of the vote running as an independent.

Everybody in Mexico City went to El Zocalo, or the main square, to celebrate AMLO’s triumph. It was packed with people, 22,000 square meters full of AMLO’s supporters with their families cheering his triumph.

On July 1st we witnessed something that had not been seen since 1994. AMLO not only won the presidency, but also the majority in the Congress and in the Senate. This is what we call in Mexico “se llevó el carro complete,” which means “he won the whole car.” He has an open door to approve or change any law or decision he would like.

AMLO’s political party MORENA now has 40 percent of the Congress and 54 percent of the Senate. For some people, these numbers can be a little scary. During the campaign, there were many unfounded rumors that AMLO had the same tendencies as the president of Venezuela, Nicolas Maduro, and would lead Mexico into socialism. López Obrador reiterated in his victory speech, which took place at the Hotel Hilton in Mexico City, that all future changes made in Mexico will be according to the country’s Constitution. We are sure that both supporters and detractors will closely watch every AMLO movement to see if he keeps his promise of the past 12 years to rid Mexico of corruption.

He also said he will respect the autonomy of the Bank of Mexico and reiterated that one of his main goals is to be remembered as a benevolent president. Further, he said that his government will be inclusive for everybody and will be “for the good of everyone, poor people are first.”

Another statistic worth mentioning is that AMLO won in 31 of Mexico’s 32 states. Guanajuato was the only state where the PAN party won.

Another very important aspect of the newly-elected government is that 50 percent of both the Senate and the Congress will be women. This is completely unprecedented in our country.

This could be a good time to create a political front led by congressional women who put aside their political differences, which would be a major change from the bad conditions of women’s rights during Peña Nieto’s term in office.

Now, there is a feeling of general satisfaction with the results. We Mexicans feel that this is the first time the people of Mexico truly decided who is going to be the president of this beautiful country. And, it appears many of the Expats In Mexico readers agree if you look at this month’s polling on the subject.

There have been big changes in Mexico every 100 years in the last three centuries. In 1810, we fought for our Independence from Spain; in 1910, we fought again, this time it was the Mexican Revolution; and, in 2018, the people chose to vote massively for Andrés Manuel López Obrador to give him the opportunity to make a really profound change in Mexico down to its foundation.

To begin, AMLO has announced that all salaries of politicians will be cut in half, starting with his. This move is a positive start to fulfilling his campaign promises. We are liking him so far, but let’s see what the future holds.

Maria & Fernando Garibay

Taking Root in Mexico by Maria and Fernando Garibay is their take on Mexico’s very rich culture. Both have been expats—Maria in London and Fernando in Vancouver—and have a very unique perspective on intercultural experiences and how to integrate into a new culture. The couple lives on the north shore of Banderas Bay and helps Puerto Vallarta-area expats learn Spanish. Email: spanishpv@gmail.com

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