Historic Presidential Election in Mexico 🌶️

 Photo: Marco Ugarte / AP

Photo: Marco Ugarte / AP

A new beginning

Andrés Manuel López Obrador (aka AMLO) was elected President of Mexico, marking the historic beginning of a leftist government after decades of centrism. AMLO’s landslide win was partly attributed to increasing drug war violence and current President Peña Nieto’s series of scandals. AMLO’s three-party coalition is expected to control the lower house and even the Senate, which will allow his legislation to be enacted relatively unopposed.
  
AMLO's campaign

AMLO campaigned to end endemic poverty, reduce drug violence, end political corruption and revive the nation’s slowing economy. He controversially proposed to offer amnesty to drug war criminals. AMLO also assured that his welfare programs and wage increases won’t raise taxes and that he will respect the private sector. 



AMLO critics dismiss him as a last resort candidate. They see him as capitalizing on Mexicans’ desire for change to push his “socialist” agenda. Anti-AMLO critics who are also anti-Trump note the similarities between the two. As with Trump, they regard AMLO's promises as vague and outlandish. They warn that these two politicians’ confrontational attitudes towards critics and global alliances will be a source of political contention. 

Pro-AMLO folk hail the president’s victory as an agent of change after years of corruption under the previous administration. They note that the election represents a triumph of AMLO’s lower and middle-class base in overcoming Mexico’s political system controlled by the elite. Though they acknowledge that AMLO can only do so much to reduce the country’s conditions, they pride his victory as a small step towards eventual uplift.


One and the same?

Mexico’s election of a populist president is a familiar tale. It reflects surging nationalist sentiments in Western countries like the US, Italy, Britain, and Germany. The victory of liberal populism in Mexico demonstrates that countries are increasingly adopting Trump’s “America First” slogan and rendering it a representation of domestic change. Like Trump, AMLO garnered support from those who believe they are marginalized by the status quo.

When you book that vacay to Mexico

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