Mexico’s Peña Nieto Talks to TIME: ‘We Can Move Beyond the Drug War’

TIME, 11/30/2012

Peña Nieto

Peña Nieto

Enrique Peña Nieto takes office tomorrow, Dec. 1, as the next President of Mexico—whose young and otherwise successful democracy is beset by narco-bloodshed (60,000 murders in the past six years), an underachieving economy (average annual growth of only 2% since 2000) and a feeling that its Latin American leadership role has been eclipsed by its fast-developing South American rival, Brazil. Peña, 46, the popular former governor of central Mexico state, convinced Mexican voters that his Institutional Revolutionary Party (PRI), which ruled Mexico from 1929 to 2000 as a corrupt, one-party dictatorship, has righted itself enough to right Mexico. He spoke with TIME’s Latin America bureau chief, Tim Padgett, and Mexico reporter Dolly Mascareñas at his transition headquarters in Mexico City. Excerpts follow (translated from Spanish).

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