Mexico’s PRI Party Bets on Non-Partisan Presidential Candidate, And It May Pay Off

Meade said that he has been working towards solutions to the challenges that Mexico is facing, while AMLO has only caused more division. (Twitter)

EspañolMexico’s Institutional Revolutionary Party (PRI) has officially announced its 2018 presidential candidate, José Antonio Meade, who served as Secretary of Finance and Public Credit until this Sunday. The governing party appears to be trying a new strategy following six years of scandal and controversy from President Enrique Peña Nieto.

On Tuesday, November 28, Meade went on TV to announce his candidacy, and his plan to “explain solutions, pose problems and how to solve them.” His opponents, meanwhile, said that he is as corrupt as the rest of the PRI despite that the official’s career has been characterized by “transparency, effort and commitment.”

For this reason, Andrés Manuel López Obrador — often referred to as AMLO in Mexico — will have a difficult time facing off against Meade, some political analysts have said. Meade has been a non-partisan politician throughout his career, a well-respected entrepreneur and academic.

Ricardo Anaya, President of the opposition National Action Party (PAN), said that Meade was arbitrarily chosen as a pre-candidate, to which Meade replied that his party wanted him because he “was not partisan.” Rather, he represents “the vanguard” — an important change from party norms that previously excluded normal citizens.

Though his leftist opponent AMLO is leading in polls, Meade expressed confidence about facing off against him.

“I don’t know Andrés Manuel López Obrador,” he said. “But I think all his approaches are old. He has a correct diagnosis, but the way he wants to resolve these issues is very old. Power has to be used in order to help and transform and someone who is so hungry for power may not be willing to do that.”

Meade said Mexico is up against very important challenges, which he intends to resolve by closing gaps in thinking rather than widening them, like AMLO appears to be doing. As for independent candidates Miguel Ángel Mancera and Margarita Zavala, he only said he has an appreciation for them.

Meade will not only be “a complicated opponent” for each of them, as well as the Frente Ciudadano — a coalition formed by the Democratic Revolutionary Party (PRD), the National Action Party (PAN) and the Movimiento Ciudadano — which claims to represent the Mexican people but is made up entirely of political actors.


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