A bad election day for the old PRI in Mexico
Once upon a time, Mexico's PRI (Institutional Revolutionary Party) won every contested election, or any election at all, for that matter. They controlled the presidency for decades and the governorship of the most populous state that surrounds Mexico City.
Well, that was then, and this is now. MORENA, President Andrés López-Obrador's party, won the state of Mexico and ended years of PRI control. This is the story:
The party of Mexican President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador was set to win a major opposition bastion in a state election on Sunday, preliminary results showed, giving the country's leader a boost as he seeks to pave the way for a successor next year.
In the State of Mexico gubernatorial race, Lopez Obrador's leftist National Regeneration Movement (MORENA) was expected to win 52.1 to 54.2% of the vote, while the candidate running for an opposition alliance was forecast to garner 43.0 to 45.2%, the state's electoral institute (IEEM) estimated.
Up north in Coahuila, a coalition of parties opposed to AMLO did win with over 55% in unofficial results.
The official reports will be declared on Wednesday, but the aforementioned results should hold. In other words, AMLO split the results.
What do we make of all of this? MORENA's victory was actually a repudiation of the PRI. Most Mexicans see the PRI as corrupt and a part of Mexican history that they'd rather forget. So the PRI candidate had no chance, thus assuring a MORENA victory. As Therese Margolis pointed out, the win was not as extensive as the party would have liked. Yes, MORENA won, but not big. This is why many pundits are calling this the end of the PRI rather than confirmation of love for AMLO.
The PRI did better in the other election because it ran as a coalition of parties focusing on national concerns. It joined forces with PAN and PRD, and that trio of parties won big. Maybe that's the formula when the presidential election comes in 2024. By the way, that election will be next July, so campaigning should start soon.
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