Political Thermometer

July 11, 2013
Political Thermometer

Elections have the effect of regulating the political temperature. The recent elections held in Mexico on July 7 are not the exception. The election outcomes confirmed what the polls predicted, and there were no major surprises. The election for governor of Baja California was the most highly anticipated, owing to the importance of this border state, and given that it was the only gubernatorial election scheduled in 2013. The National Action Party (PAN) won a heavily contested election by a narrow margin allowing it to continue governing in Baja California as it has for the past 24 years. The PAN will have six more years to govern and must do so as part of a coalition, given that the PAN candidate, Francisco Vega, obtained the vote of the Party of the Democratic Revolution (PRD) in taking on the Institutional Revolutionary Party (PRI), which was defeated. It is interesting to see the joining of two ideologically rival parties. In politics, it is not common to see the right wing work together with the left wing, as was the case in Baja California. Up next is the internal strife within the two parties and the parties' reorganization after the elections and in the aftermath of agreements, concessions, expenses, influences, recommendations and other political strategies that have been implemented. At the end of the year, the PAN must renew its leadership, which will be heavily contested given that different groups within this party have been divided and involved in numerous confrontations, suggesting a fierce battle to take over the leadership position left by Gustavo Madero. As the election for President of the National Executive PAN Committee approaches, one is likely to see an internal conflict pitting all the participants against each other. The PAN must look within itself to analyze the reasons why it went from the leading political party in Mexico for 12 years to the third political party after the presidential defeat in 2012. The best that can happen for Mexican democracy is for the parties to find formulas that will enable them to act with efficiency, certainty and to inspire the confidence of their members and supporters. All sectors and leaders that make up the PAN have shown an interest in strengthening their party in order to elevate it. Nevertheless, it is foreseeable that political fervor and the fight for power will make the political thermometer of the PAN rise by many degrees at the end of the year when the new President of the National Executive PAN Committee is selected.

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