The removal from office process, or recall, is a direct democratic process through which citizens decide whether an elected official should continue to serve after the expiration of his term or be removed. Amendments to the Mexican Constitution published in the Official Journal of the Federation on December 20, 2019 establish that the removal from office process is a citizens’ right. In accordance with such amendments, the process to recall the Mexican President must be invoked by the National Electoral Institute (INE for its acronym in Spanish). It must be requested by at least 3% (2.6 million) of Mexico’s registered voters and may be requested only once. Such single request must be made within the three months following the end of the third year of the President’s constitutional term.
Since the beginning of his term, Mexican President, Andres Manuel López Obrador proposed that he would promote the removal from office process under the premise that “the people elect, and the people recall”. It seemed theorical and academic, but it has now become political. Mexico’s political thermometer has risen several degrees due to the different and opposing views on this topic. Ironically, Mexican President López Obrador and his supporters are proponents of the removal from office process, as are those who are openly opposed to his government and would prefer that he leave the presidency in the event a recall were to be successful. On the other hand, a group of opposing political parties view the recall process a political scheme by the President to secure his power and demonstrate that the people not only approve his administration, but that they would like to expand his constitutional term. There are arguments for and against the removal from office process and it is a topic that will continue to affect Mexico’s political thermometer.