According to Los Angeles Times, for most of the last century, elections in Mexico were a farce.
The ruling Institutional Revolutionary Party controlled ballot boxes, and voter rolls and even tallied votes. Unsurprisingly, the party won every time.
It became known as “the perfect dictatorship,” an authoritarian regime that rarely resorted to brute force because it so decisively controlled elections.
That all crumbled in 2000 when a candidate from another party won the presidency for the first time in seven decades. It was all thanks to a groundbreaking 1996 reform that shielded the newly formed national electoral institute from political interference.
Now the institute that helped birth Mexico’s democracy is under attack.
President Andrés Manuel López Obrador, a leftist populist whose party controls both houses of Congress and most state governorships, is pushing for a dramatic overhaul of the institute that critics say would strip away its autonomy and once again concentrate power in the hands of the ruling party.