The important election is that of the Chamber of Deputies. If AMLO conserves and even increases his majority there, Mexican democracy will be in serious danger
In just under two months, Mexico will hold important elections that will be decisive for its future.
On June 6, midterm elections will be held to completely renew the Chamber of Deputies, today with an absolute majority in the hands of López Obrador and his coalition, led by the National Regeneration Movement (Morena), with its satellite parties. It also has a relative majority in the Senate, which will not be renewed for now. On the other hand, 15 of the 32 governorships in the country and a large number of local councils and congresses will be renewed. In all these elections, for the first time in the history of the country, the possibility of the reelection of legislators and mayors will be applied, something for which many of us have fought for quite some time.
Obviously, the important choice is that of the Chamber of Deputies. If López Obrador conserves and even increases his majority there, Mexican democracy will be in serious danger. Although the dam of not having an absolute majority in the Senate (which would allow it, for example, to change the country’s Constitution at will) is powerful, it is not unbeatable: The support it obtained from some “opposition” parties, In order to militarize the country and inscribe it in the Constitution, he talks about the fact that it is not an impregnable dam and that it can be crossed.
To open up for what López Obrador announces every day: to enlarge his margins of action, even above the constitutional brakes, to do his only will in the country. That is what is being fought in these elections.
Today, popular support for the figure of López Obrador is great, although not enormous, hovering around 60 percent approval. It remains to be seen if that approval can be transferred to the parties in his coalition, which for now is not certain. Although in two months everything can happen, beginning with the revelation of some scandals, to the detriment of López Obrador or the opposition, as it is already beginning to happen.
Either way, the high acceptance of López Obrador in the midst of the repeated failures of his administration is still surprising: In 2020, GDP fell 8.5 percent, 3.25 million formal jobs were lost and public insecurity reached historic levels, Despite the confinement caused by the pandemic, so that every month of his government an average of 3,000 victims of intentional homicide and femicide have been presented each month, and on the other hand, even the US Northern Command warns us that 35 % of the national territory is dominated by drug cartels.
This year alone, 2021, the growth that the government announced is nowhere to be seen, coming more at the expense of the growth of the US economy itself and of President Biden’s recent rescue plan. This, while AMLO engages in daily fights with companies, constitutional counterweights, and dramatic morning disqualifications against his political “adversaries”.
Thus, while López Obrador reaps triumphs in his acceptance and popularity, pulverizes the opposition, and denigrates his critics, he is leaving the country in ruin, where problems grow, almost inertially, to unmanageable levels or the next six-year crisis, which Mexicans believed they had left behind, forever. In this context, it would not be surprising if, after the elections, López Obrador’s personalist project is triggered, demanding a new political Constitution or eliminating the brake on non-reelection, now without obstacles and strengthened by popular support, for this, according to him, to solve the problems of the country.
After all, that is precisely what populism is: it proposes very easy and attractive solutions for the electorate, but which end up being false and even counterproductive, and therefore demagogic. That is the way Mexico goes. And it won’t end well.
Victor H. Becerra
Victor H. Becerra is Secretary General of Mexico Libertario. He has contributed to the formation and development of multiple liberal organizations in Latin America. Follow him on @victorhbecerra and on his personal blog: Walking through Latin America
Mexico Daily Post