By liébano sáenz
There will be state elections throughout 2011 in the State of Mexico, Coahuila, Nayarit, Michoacán and local elections in Hidalgo. There are rumors circulating that say that Guerrero and Baja California Sur were the result of manipulated elections. Nevertheless, the two states will not dictate the electoral behavior of other states due to their specific particularities.
Guerrero’s and Baja California Sur’s results, as well as those of Zacatecas, Aguascalientes, Tlaxcala, Puebla, Oaxaca and Sinaloa, were ultimately dictated by the candidates themselves, not by parties or alliances. In fact, there were no alliances in Guerrero, and the National Action Party’s (PAN) candidate decided sit the opportunity out, which in the end was irrelevant. Ángel Aguirre took office in the state. In Baja California Sur, the winning candidate, who was proposed by the PAN, was a former member of the Democratic Revolution Party (PRD).
True, there is some common ground here: the parties that managed to seize power took their candidates from the other turf. Yet, things seem a little different for the State of Mexico and Coahuila. We’ve witnessed several times the fragmentation of power in state governments. Baja California Sur is no exception, parties utilize people from the Institutional Revolutionary Party (PRI) to take office.
The PRI has been torn apart several times, especially when PRI constituents vote for the PRD or are in favor of forging alliances with other parties. This situation, though, will not occur in Edomex or Coahuila.
The following are the candidates that will probably run for office in the State of Mexico against the PRI: for the PAN, Senators Ulises Ramírez and Luis Felipe Bravo Mena, and for the PRD, Senators Yeidckol Polevnsky and Alejandro Encinas.
They are all possible candidates that have forged a career for themselves in their own parties, which means that none of them has the capability of poaching votes from the PRI. Besides, their profiles have shown us that they do not possess the political prowess to garner a lot of support. Several studies prove that PRD and PAN voters, if given the chance, would vote for the PRI. The PRI is now in the good graces of a large percentage of the population due to Enrique Peña Nieto’s excellent performance as governor. The PRI is now capable of standing its ground and gracefully facing any given challenge.
For instance, in Coahuila’s past two elections, PAN candidates Juan Antonio García Villa and Jorge Zermeño, who were also supported by the PRD, were not able to stop the PRI from being victorious. Enrique Martínez and Humberto Moreira took office without any difficulties. And, of course, the PAN and the PRD will once again forge an alliance in hopes of beating the PRI candidate, but again, the PRI’s strong stance, its unrelenting unity, and Governor Moreira’s good image with the population of Coahuila will most likely mean a triumph for the PRI.
The same will happen in Nayarit. The PAN and the PRD will plot to ally themselves, as they did twelve years ago, to take office, but the PRI is too strong and it will endure any blow.
Michoacán will most definitely be an interesting battlefield this year because it will be the last state to hold elections before the federal elections of 2012. The three parties have a strong presence in Michoacán. The PRD has, however, lost its credibility in the state due to the horrible administration of the current governor and the lack of a true leader that will take full responsibility for the party’s actions. In turn, the PAN is heavily supported by the population of the state, who also support President Calderón.
As for the PRI in Michoacán, things are going wonderfully. The current Mayor of Morelia, Fausto Vallejo, has a high level of acceptance from people throughout the state.
Beyond any results, every single party must learn from what happened in Guerrero. The state unfortunately went through several mishaps, including pork-barrel politics, filibuster gambits, verbal and physical violence, and the PAN’s decision not to go on with its campaign. Our politicians need to acquire a sense public-spiritedness when it comes to politics. The situation gets worse when public servants decide to use elections from other states as a means to further their political careers. The Mayor of Mexico City, Marcelo Ebrard, comes to mind. Only parties and candidates should deal with elections, not governments that are already established.
The increased rates in citizen participation during campaigns should not encourage parties, public officials or candidates to cajole people into voting for them. The number of people who actually went to the ballots has risen in the past few years, and in spite of the generalized conception of hopelessness in the population, the constituent’s conviction that their vote is useful has not dwindled.
Whatever happens in the upcoming elections of this year, the parties need to take into consideration the opinion of the citizenry. The parties must once again trust themselves and their political plans. They should never make use of demagogic gambits or pork-barrel politics, but most importantly, they must trust the citizens, who have become the key element in the electoral process.
Source: The News
Psted by: Conrado Garcia Jamin
- Leftist party retains governorship in Mexico’s Guerrero state (seattletimes.nwsource.com)
- Strange bedfellows swing Baja race (seattletimes.nwsource.com)
- You: Strange bedfellows in Mexico’s election season (latimes.com)