Mexico politics

It’s a good job discipline is an integral part of the Mexican ruling party ethos.

Lawmakers of all shades will need it next month when it comes to debating legislation to implement Mexico’s keynote reform – opening up the energy sector after nearly eight decades under state control: key debates will clash with the World Cup – something opposition lawmakers fought hard to avoid. Continue reading »

Last week, Humberto Benítez, Mexico’s attorney-general for consumer protection, told the press that the thought of handing in his resignation “never even crossed my mind”. On Wednesday, Benítez was clearing out his desk, the latest symbol of a more transparent, and more accountable country. Continue reading »

Enrique Pena Nieto, governor of the state of MexicoMexico’s reformist administration suffered its first significant setback on Tuesday as political infighting forced it to back-peddle on plans to unveil a banking-reform bill. But how serious is the scrap? And how will it impact the rest of the government’s reform programme?

Investors need to have a sense of both answers because they have been pouring billions of dollars into the country in the hope that centrist President Enrique Peña Nieto can transform Mexico into one of the world’s most successful emerging markets. Continue reading »

Enrique Peña Nieto’s clean-cut image is matched by his enthusiasm for transparency, a theme that ran through his election campaign and he has followed through while in power. The Mexican president and his Cabinet recently published audited statements of their personal income, properties and other assets. Continue reading »

Who are Mexico’s real dinosaurs? The term usually applies to certain old-school fat cats in the Institutional Revolutionary Party (PRI), whose Enrique Peña Nieto won last Sunday’s election. A common fear is that these dinosaurs will get their claws into the 45-year old Pena Nieto when he assumes the presidency in December.

But the dinosaur label fits Mexican leaders of other political stripes too – notably Andrés Manuel López Obrador (pictured) of the left-leaning Party of the Democratic Revolution (PRD). Continue reading »

What is in an election? As Mexico gears up for Sunday’s presidential vote, much of the chatter has centred on the possible return of the centrist Institutional Revolutionary Party (PRI) under Enrique Peña Nieto, its candidate and far-away favourite, according to opinion polls.

And with little wonder: when the party finally lost power in 2000 after ruling for 71 consecutive years of pseudo democracy, many political analysts predicted that the party would shrivel and die as the country embraced a new, more pluralistic future.

But let’s step back a moment from the constant questions of “will a PRI victory mean a return to the past?” and consider the political and economic stability that this election season offers investors compared with six years ago. Continue reading »

What does the latest poll on Mexico’s presidential elections tell us about voting trends? The first thing is that Enrique Peña Nieto still has a big, and probably unassailable lead.

Monday’s poll by Buendia & Laredo, and published in the country’s El Universal newspaper, puts EPN, as the opposition Institutional Revolutionary Party (PRI) candidate is known, on 37.8 per cent. That is almost 14 points clear of second placed Andrés Manuel López Obrador, the charismatic leftwing leader, who is now on 23.9 per cent.

The second thing is that the 45-year-old PRI former state governor is going to have to tread carefully from here on in. Continue reading »

To judge by Thursday’s sell-off of the Mexican peso, investors are more than a little worried about Andrés Manuel López Obrador, the country’s leftwing presidential candidate.

The scare came after a poll, published by Reforma newspaper, showed that López Obrador was now just four percentage points behind Enrique Peña Nieto, current front runner and candidate of the centrist Institutional Revolutionary Party (PRI). Continue reading »

Roosters duel during a cockfighting match in the capital Kabul on March 12, 2010. The jargon of Mexican politics borrows considerably from that of cock-fighting. A key moment is the “destape”, when the roosters’ hoods are taken off, their identity is revealed and they come in fighting.

Now, within days, two heavyweight roosters are up and running, ready to fight, though not with each other. Continue reading »