La Profesora Abstraída

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Tuesday, September 20, 2005

AMLO PRD candidate by default

The PRD will submit the paperwork to officially make AMLO its candidate for President in 2006. (Though the exact timing of the submission will be delayed because of election rules and legal concerns.) They will forego the open primary that was planned. Lopez Obrador is the only candidate that registered with the party for the nomination.

How's that for democracy?

posted by Michelle @ 9:53 AM,


At 9/20/2005 7:51 PM, Anonymous Matthew Søberg Shugart said...

How's that for democracy? Actually pretty good, I think. The PRD has outlived its founder, who is still around and making noises (silly ones at that) about running separately. But the party founded by Cardenas has moved on, has a new candidate, and an excellent chance at winning. Seems like a pretty good test of institutionalization to me.

At 9/21/2005 9:07 AM, Blogger Michelle said...

I agree that it's good that Cardenas has moved on and allowed (although with some reluctance) the party to move on as well.

More interesting to me is the way the Mexican media (and not just La Jornada, but as a leftist paper it's even more hypocritical) has treated the candidate selection processes of the PAN and the PRD.

The PAN held elections that were well contested but with low turnout, and some cried foul (at the press conferences following the elections), claiming that low turnout reflected a lack of internal party democracy. (And Mexican parties are probably overly sensitive about this issue since they all want to be more transparent and democratic than the PRI.)

In contrast, the PRD has a clear favorite in Lopez Obrador and decides to avoid an internal election (to avoid confrontations? to hide internal conflict?), and no one seems to complain about the lack of internal party transparency or democracy. Of course, they could hold an election and either a) not be able to find anyone willing to go up against ALMO or b) get a patsy to stand in the election for the sake of appearances.

Neither option is very appealing, but to allow Lopez Obrador to become candidate without an open debate (and instead, with a debate behind closed doors with Cardenas and his remaining followers...remember back in February, Cardenas was still claiming to be the only hope for the left), smacks of old-style PRIista politics.

Will there be an election next time, or will AMLO give someone the dedazo?

As many of the PRIistas that I interviewed last spring liked to point out, the PRD is filled with ex-PRIistas, some of whom would be categorized as the 'dinosaurs' of the old party, and as such, the PRD should be extra-careful to be more democratic in its internal selection procedures (if it's concerned about its public image).

At 9/21/2005 1:10 PM, Blogger Elenamary said...

I voted in the PRD primary (back in June). I believe that yes there should have been some kind of "internal" election for presidence, however, if the PRD sets this as their precedent that they will not have "internal" elections for the presidents seat, that I am somewhat fine with that because then at least I know where the PRD stands. Just because I voted with the PRD in the primary doesn't mean that they are my party or would continue to be. Yes, I want a completly democratic party...but I am not expecting it from the PRD, PRI or PAN...okay maybe a little from the PAN.

At 9/21/2005 2:00 PM, Anonymous Matthew Shugart said...

No doubt, when it comes to internal organization, the PRD learned from the masters.

But AMLO, and any successor as candidate (or president, if he wins) has to build up a personal reputation and a party consensus in his favor. So, I would not push the "dedazo" metaphor too far.

Mexico has entered a realm in which, for those with presidential ambitions, performance in elective office matters more than being in the incumbent's inner circle. Ironically, the PAN (and especially Creel) seems to have been the last to learn this message.


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