New Mexican president to deal with structural problems
Let's wish Pres Calderon a happy retirement. On balance, he tried but failed to reform Mexico's "sacred cows" such as PEMEX. He also took on the cartels and the war has been very costly but a lot of "narcos" are dead or in prison. My guess is that Mexicans will remember him as a strong leader who made tough decisions. He leaves office without a major scandal and that speaks volumes about his character and integrity.
Let's say hello to Pres Pena-Nieto.
I think that Pres Pena-Nieto starts with two strong positives:
1) He was the governor of the largest state and got a first hand look at the economic realities of the country; and,
2) He and the new First Lady are very telegenic. I think that he has the potential to connect with Mexicans and enjoy a lot of support.
Pres Pena-Nieto will face some negatives:
1) He is from the PRI and that is bad news for many Mexicans. I think that many Mexicans are not buying that the new PRI is different from the old PRI. The old PRI is well known for corruption and crony capitalism.
2) Mexico faces very serious structural problems, i.e PEMEX and an underperforming agricultural sector. Mexico will continue to live in the 1930s unless PEMEX and agriculture are reformed and brought to the 21st century. Mexico should start by allowing foreign investment in both sectors.
Last, but not least, Pres Pena-Nieto will learn that Pres Obama is not really interested in Mexico or Latin America.
Pres Obama only thinks about Mexicans during the campaign. He quickly forgets about them after the election as we saw in his first term. It won't be any different in the second term, especially if Mexicans keep blindly giving Obama 70% of their vote! Why should Pres BO care about the Mexican vote if they keep voting for him no matter what the results are?
Good luck to the new president of Mexico.