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Early returns

4 July 2010

This is by no means a “finished” post (or even a slightly polished one), so consider this more notes than anything else.  I won’t have phone service until next Friday, and in the meantime, am posting while back in the old house for a couple of hours.

I’m writing this Sunday afternoon, and have no idea how the elections are going, or will go. Unlike the United States and other countries, there are no “early exit polls”, nor any reporting until the PREP figures (based on sample counts) are made available by official sources… sometime around 11 PM Sunday evening.

In the meantime, it appears as if a late wave of voter and candidate intimidation as not — possibly to the disappointment of foreign commentators — “drug related”.

A PRD candidate for the broad anti-PRI coalition in Oaxaca was gunned down on Friday.  With no ties to the “drug wars” and occuring far from the U.S. border, it received no foreign coverage.  Also in Oaxaca, and at this time, with no further information available, 38 people were arrested in Oaxaca city hotels. The out of town visitors were carrying not just a variety of electronic communications equipment, but explosives. El Mundo (Spain) claims the 38 were from Mexico City and the “explosives” were molotov cocktails (which normally are manufactured on site, and usually aren’t classified as explosives).  At any rate, a bunch of people with some nefarious purpose in mind were arrested — or maybe not, it being Oaxaca, where sometimes crimes are “discovered” after the guilty are identified.

El Mundo also reports on a caravan of armed (with machetes, bats and handguns) tooling around Veracruz, but gives very few details.

In Aguascalientes, a Federal Deputy (PAN) was arrested by State Police for driving with out-of-state plates on her car. That makes no sense, but the arrest warrant was issued by the State’s General Prosecutor (Attorney General) on some unspecified charge.

And, in Pachuca, Hidalgo, opposition coalition candidate Xochitl Galvez campaign headquarters were raided by police and computers taken after receiving an anonymous noise complaint.  I’ve never heard of a noise complaint in Mexico anywhere, and certainly not one that required the police to seize computers.  The computers were later released, by the way… but they’re staying quiet.

Finally, in Huehuetán, Chiapas (where there was a fight involving various PRI members), two unnamed men shot and killed each over while discussing the philosophical differences between coalition partners PRI and PVEM (Green Party).

Whatever weirdness is going on, it is not necessarily “drug related” as the foreign press keeps saying.  Not that the narcos aren’t a factor, but old-fashioned power politics, the resurgence of the PRI as the only organized faction left after PAN did everything in its power to destroy PRD, and was itself riven by internal dissentions, and the generally inept performance of the sitting administration are all factors to be considered.

5 Comments leave one →
  1. otto permalink
    4 July 2010 8:18 pm

    Argentina’s Clarín has PRI making gains, FWIW

  2. humberto permalink
    5 July 2010 12:44 am

    In tijuana, the clear winner is abstencionism with a clear 70% of the vote.
    The ones who did vote went and punished the PAN, and the candidate who Godfather is Calderon.
    The interesting part, tough nothing new, is that Tijuana and Baja have always been bellweather for the future of the nation.
    The ominous part is that this will encourage Hank Rhon to become the candidate for governor in two years, riding the PRI wave.
    The pan in baja pays the price of becoming institucional like the old PRI, with all their effort wasted on the internal election, and years of covering and abiding corruption. No one goes to jail, tough everyone knows a corrupt government agent. With the tijuana insecurity, the populace knew that every rich politician had bought properties in neighbouring San Diego.

  3. 5 July 2010 7:53 am

    Tijuana has swung back between the PAN and PRI, has it not? (PAN has kept the governor’s office.)

    Odd that the arrest of the PAN lawmaker in Ags was done at the behest of the PAN governor. That pretty much explains why the party lost the state.

    I’ve never seen the leaders of two losing parties, PAN and PRD, so pleased – PAN loses Ags and Tlaxcala and PRD loses Zacatecas – but it reflects how much they mutually dislike Oax. Gov. Ulises Ruiz and Puebla Gov. Mario Marin. These results guarantee they’ll unite again in 2011 to topple the PRI in the State of Mexico – an attempt to derail Enrique Peña Nieto’s presidential aspirations. AMLO has branded Peña Nieto and the PRI as serious looming enemies: Will he participate this time around?

  4. humberto permalink
    5 July 2010 10:43 am

    Tijuana has swung before, but the previous time was against Hank himself and his fortune. This time it was a surprise, against a weak candidate, that nonetheless won. The whole state voted against the PAN, leaving the governor alone without any mayoral support and no “house” majority.

  5. 5 July 2010 8:44 pm

    Thanks for the insight. i

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