2015 Mexican Mid-Term Elections: A Battle Between PRI And PAN – Analysis

6/6/15 Eurasia Review

shutterstock_101964346On June 7, Mexico will hold its 2015 mid-term federal elections. The mid-terms in Mexico come every three years, occurring as a halfway point in the six-year presidential term; this will then be the most important round prior to the 2018 presidential elections. At stake will be 500 federal deputies, nine governors, 17 state legislatures, and 903 municipalities/delegations, 83.5 million Mexicans are registered to vote. Among the diputados (deputies) to be elected into the Cámara de Diputados (Chamber of Deputies), 300 will be directly elected by plurality from single-member districts, while the remaining 200 deputies will be elected through proportional representation, each party’s share of the national vote. The gubernatorial seats up for selection are Baja California Sur, Campeche, Colima, Guerrero, Michoacán, Nuevo León, Querétaro, Sonora, and San Luís Potosí.

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Mexico takes gamble on suspending key pillar of education reform

6/2/15 Financial Times

Mexico's President Enrique Pena Nieto and first lady Angelica Rivera salute during the military parade celebrating Independence Day at the Zocalo square in downtown Mexico CityThe Mexican government’s decision to bow to pressure from a dissident teachers’ union ahead of midterm elections that the president admits are a referendum on his rule is a political gamble that could undermine, not boost, its battered credibility.

The education ministry made the surprise announcement on Friday that it was putting teacher testing — a key pillar of the government’s much-vaunted education reform, as well as a constitutional requirement — on ice indefinitely. “This is a government that is terrified of the short term,” said Carlos Elizondo, a political analyst. “It is a sign of weakness.”

The SNTE teachers’ union, the largest in Latin America, is backing the reforms, and running ad campaigns praising ordinary teachers for their commitment and professionalism under the slogan “these are the teachers we should be talking about”. The CNTE teachers’ union, by contrast, makes headlines for its belligerent tactics, strikes and marches.

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Mexico elections: Will ‘El Bronco’ factor drive weary voters to the polls?

5/28/15 The Christian Science Monitor

nuevo_leonIndependents are eligible to run in all states for the first time in June 7 elections. The gubernatorial race [here] in the northern state of Nuevo León is heating up, with the first non-affiliated candidate, Jaime Rodríguez Calderón, aka “El Bronco,” posing a formidable threat to the incumbent Institutional Revolutionary Party (PRI). Mr. Rodríguez is polling first or second in a handful of surveys, underscoring widespread frustration with government corruption and leadership.

“In the past, Mexicans have said, ‘we get that politicians might not be honest, but we want ones who are effective,'” says Duncan Wood, director of the Mexico Institute at the Wilson Center in Washington, D.C. “Now, it seems as though there’s a sense that if you’re with a party, you’re part of the problem instead of the solution.” Still, independents are facing an uphill battle to finance their campaigns and reach voters, says Mr. Weldon. El Bronco’s campaign has relied heavily on social media, with catchy videos and chatty exchanges with constituents posted on Facebook and Twitter.

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Infographic: Local Elections in 2015 in Mexico

During the 2015 elections in Mexico, 17 states will renew governorships, municipalities, and/or local congresses. Outcomes at the local level could change the political map of the country. This infographic illustrates the states that will hold local elections in 2015, as well as the type of election each will hold.

For more news and analysis on the 2015 midterm elections, check out the Mexico Institute’s 2015 Elections Guide: https://mexicoinstituteonelections2015.wordpress.com/

Local elections map

Click here to view the infographic.