It was the largest anti-incumbency mobilization in nearly four years. Tens of thousands of demonstrators rallied in Mexico City on Sunday against President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador’s electoral reform bill. A wave of people flooded the central avenue of Paseo de la Reforma to reject a plan that threatens the independence of the National Electoral Institute (INE), which has been responsible for organizing elections since its creation in October 1990. AFP Group. Other demonstrations took place in the country, in Toluca and Monterrey.
Among the demonstrators were former President Vicente Fox (2000–2006) and MP Santiago Creel (who held the rotating presidency of the House of Representatives for one year), both members of the National Action Party (PAN, right-wing opposition).
At the meeting, Graciela Aberel, an English teacher, judged the reform plan to be “too radical.” The 50-year-old alleged that the current president “wants all elections to depend on the government again so he can manipulate them as he likes and stay in power”.
Protection of electoral freedom
After nearly four years in office, the left-wing president – elected in 2018 for a single six-year term – believes the INE covered up fraud in the previous two failed elections in 2006 and 2012.
“I’m not corrupt, classist, racist, hypocrite,” proclaimed one poster, referring to the adjectives López Obrador used last week to disqualify opponents of the reform.
“It’s not against today’s government, but against any government that wants to control elections today or tomorrow,” Francisco Videla, a 50-year-old businessman who came with family and friends, told AFP. .
The reform envisages members of the INE’s board of directors being elected by popular vote, as well as reducing subsidies to political parties. The reform plans to reduce the number of federal representatives from 500 to 300. The number of senators will increase from 128 to 96. Andrés Manuel López Obrador’s party and his allies dominate both houses.
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