AMLO: Taking It to the Streets

At exactly 3:12 p.m. Thursday in Mexico City, the vigil ended. Vote tally charts running live on several Internet sites hit the magic 100 percent of the count.

Ceci Connolly

And with that, Felipe Calderón, a compact 43-year-old with several advanced degrees and a penchant for all-things soccer, became the next president of Mexico.

Or did he?

Yes, the drama continues, as Mexico continues a headlong plunge heads into its very own version of Florida 2000 -- except the south-of-the-border version could be livelier and go much longer. As anyone following this saga knows, the official count put Calderón over the top shortly after 4 a.m. Thursday, but his opponent, Andrés Manuel López Obrador, trailing by just .57 percentage points, said he plans to file a formal appeal.

In addition to the promise of a protracted court challenge, the charismatic 52-year-old former mayor of Mexico City has summoned his loyal followers to what is certain to be a massive demonstration tomorrow in the downtown square known as El Zocalo. López Obrador has proven he can turn out big, big crowds; almost immediately after his call, the national workers union announced it would join in civil resistance to defend the "legality of the vote."

The official timetable calls for Mexico's Electoral Tribunal to rule on all challenges by Aug. 31 and announce a new president by Sept. 6. And it could take that long, explains the Chicago Tribune's Hugh Dellios: "Unlike the Federal Electoral Institute, or IFE, which conducted the vote, the tribunal has authority to open every ballot box and count every vote, one of López Obrador's primary demands. The seven-judge tribunal has final say in any electoral matter."

The Punditocracy Speaks

The chattering class is not happy with AMLO's refusal to concede.

"Now the legal challenges begin -- and perhaps worse," writes Wall Street Journal columnist Mary Anastasia O'Grady. "On Wednesday AMLO marchers blocked traffic on a main boulevard and 400 rabblerousers camped outside the Federal Electoral Institute to protest, with a clear message of intimidation. Now Mr. López Obrador has called a rally for tomorrow morning.

"Should Mr. López Obrador decide to put all his money on the slim chance he can prevail, his infamous modus operandi of mob activism during his early career in the southern state of Tabasco and later as the mayor of this city may give guidance about what Mexicans are in for," writes O'Grady. "Indeed, he seems to have been training for this mission for some time."

Luis Carlos Ugalde, head of the IFE, said López Obrador's challenge was a slap to every Mexican who voted. Columnist Sergio Sarmiento, writing in Reforma Friday morning, says López Obrador is "doing enormous damage" by prolonging the contest.

Some AMLO allies felt compelled to back up the electoral commission, which has taken a few hits during this historic count. "I don't have the slightest doubt that what the institute has said is correct, that Mr. Felipe Calderón has won,' Elba Esther Gordillo, a powerful union leader, told Mexico City's Radio Red."

The Miami Herald's Mexico edition lays out the recount arguments, pro and con: A recount, said analyst Denise Dresser, "makes sense in such a tight election. "Otherwise," she said, "the Calderón team will have a Pyrrhic victory. The doubts arising from the anomalies detected in the process, small as they are, will persist.

"On the other hand, César Cansino, a political analyst and EL UNIVERSAL columnist, sees the PRD candidate's challenge of the voting results as a provocation. "It goes beyond the limits," he said. "Moods are already overheating and this runs the risk of churning up feelings of fraud. It's an injustice to our institutions."

At least López Obrador got some support from north of the border. The venerable New York Times editorial pages weighed in Friday morning in support of a legal challenge: "[T]here are enough problems to warrant a complete recount. Some polling stations that have recounted their ballots have found that the votes were misrecorded on tally sheets. The earlier discrepancies appeared to largely favor Mr. Calderón, in at least one case mistakenly awarding him hundreds of extra votes. The I.F.E. cannot legally order a recount of the entire presidential election. But the Federal Election Tribunal, an independent panel created to handle these kinds of disputes, could."

The Times, wisely, opposes any sort of violent upheaval by the López Obrador camp, but concludes with a mini-lecture for Calderón, who "should not oppose a recount. If the result favors him, he should be able to govern more effectively."

Making Nice ... Or Not

Even before the vote count concluded, Calderón was blaming his rival for triggering what some have deemed an electoral crisis for a democracy still in its infancy.

"It was irresponsible of the other candidate to come out and say that he had won by half a million votes when it was not true," Calderón said in an interview with the Financial Times Wednesday. "And it would have been very irresponsible of me to have left Mexico and, I think the whole world, just with his version. It would have been tragic. So we came out and said, ok we are going to respect the IFE but that, with the data available, I am winning. It's like not responding to a chess move.

"If someone moves his pawn so do I. You move into the centre of the board and so do I. That's what happened and we went to bed. It was the same for both of us with the exception that he was wrong."

Calderón said that AMLO's refusal to accept the results "is an expression of intolerance and of danger."

By Thursday, perhaps feeling a bit more magnanimous with things going his way, Calderón was offering an olive branch, speaking of the coalition government he hopes to build come December.

At his campaign headquarters, a jubilant Calderón was parroting AMLO, promising to "overcome the poverty" that tens of millions of Mexicans live under. "If the contest is behind us, our differences are behind us. Now is the hour for unity and agreements between Mexicans," Calderón said. "I ask those who didn't vote for me to give me the opportunity to win your trust."

But as the Dallas Morning News pointed out, it may be too late for snuggling up to López Obrador. The feisty former Mexico City mayor said Calderón "should be ashamed, proclaiming himself the winner. ...You cannot aspire to be president of Mexico without moral authority."

Democracy as Entertainment

Although some Americans may prefer to cast their eyes aside rather than be reminded of the Bush-Gore fiasco, this electoral showdown has riveted much of this nation of 103 million, according to the Los Angeles Times.

"Across Mexico, the recount was an exercise in community democracy, with ordinary citizens joining party activists and election officials to witness the tallying of the reports at 300 regional offices of Mexico's Federal Election Institute, three days after an estimated 42 million Mexicans cast their votes.

"Each of the five parties with presidential candidates had representatives at the counting stations, and López Obrador called on his supporters to act as unofficial observers. With crowds of onlookers cheering and booing, PRD representatives often insisted that ballot boxes be reopened for recounts."

What Does It All Mean?

Now that at least some of the dust is settling, analysts are beginning to dissect the vote. Calderón, the big spender in the race, spent 45 pesos per vote (a little over $4), a bargain by U.S. standards.

After studying the numbers, Andres Oppenheimer concluded that young adults turned out strongly for Calderón, the man viewed by many as the pro-business, status quo candidate: "Contrary to the conventional wisdom that young people tend to vote for leftist candidates who want radical change, an exit poll by the Mexico daily Reforma shows that, among youths ages 18 to 29, a total of 38 percent voted for pro-business Calderón, 34 percent for leftist former Mexico City Mayor Andrés Manuel López Obrador and the remainder for centrist candidates."

On Reforma's editorial page, Manuel J. Jauregui interprets the results as an affirmation of Mexico's still-young political order. He concludes that Mexicans chose competence over ineptitude. (Of course, the choosing done by Mexicans was by a razor-slim margin. It would be equally valid to argue that virtually the same number of voters selected López Obrador's sales pitch.)

Warren Mitofsky, president and founder of the polling firm bearing his name, had high praise for Mexico's electoral processes and little good to say about the U.S. system or American media.

"I would think the Mexican system with its strong election commission that is uniform across the country would be better than anything we are doing in the U.S.," he told Pew Research Center president Andrew Kohut. "One of the problems with the U.S. is we don't have uniformity from county to county and state to state. Every county and state is making their own rules and they aren't making them consistently."

Mitofsky, whose firm conducted surveys for the news network Televisa, said the Mexican press was much more responsible with exit poll data than their U.S. counterparts in 2004. Speaking of his home country, he said: "The leaking in this country is an abomination."

In the meantime, López Obrador's rally begins at 5 p.m. Saturday in Mexico City's zocalo. Campaign Conexión will be there.

-- Ceci Connolly

Editor's Note: Connolly was on Washington Post Radio Friday afternoon to discuss the Mexican election. Listen here.

By washingtonpost.com Editors |  July 7, 2006; 12:30 PM ET  | Category:  Campaign Conexión
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This article used "Reforma" newspaper as it's basis and fact page. This is a huge mistake and contrary to reality. Reforma is similar to the Wall Street Journal, which as we remember during the 2000 election in the U.S., was obviously siding with the Bush camp and pushing to end the recount process. Mexico's electoral history is much different than ours and this article didn't elaborate on that enough. The successors in Mexico used to be chosen by the "dedeso", the finger. The reigning president would literally point to his successor. In 1988 the PRD obviously won the vote by a massive amount but fraud prevented the progressive candidate, Cuahtemac Cardenas, from winning. Poverty in Mexico is nothing like we have in the US. For anyone who has visited Mexico outside of it's resort towns and in the rural areas, life is similar to other Latin American countries. Obviously, Miss Connoly has not been outside of Cabo San Lucas and prefers to get her information from La Reforma. Try doing your own work and doing a little history check. Mexico has been aching for a left leaning progressive candidate since 1917. They are also used to elections being stolen. There is much more to this story than comparing it to the 2000 election in our own country.

Posted by: Stephen Allen | July 7, 2006 01:27 PM

As an American visiting Mexico who has closely been following this election, it is scary how closely the rhetoric of the right-wing National Action Party of Felipe Calderón resembles that of George Bush. Like George, he excessively used sports analogies in his campaign, as if politics is just another football game. In this strongly Catholic country, he also played on people's religious feelings. He continually trotted out his wife and kids to emphasize that he was a "family" man as opposed to his adversary, López Obrador, who is presently unmarried. He said he had the "brazo fuerte" or strong arm of God on his side. Even the way he appears to have won this election resembles the way Bush won his 2000 election--in an extremely tight race in which he opposed the recount of votes, which Obrador is insisting upon. I am sure the Mexican country club set, which Calderón represents, always counts their bills at the bank at least two or three times. But then, we're talking about money, and here it's just the will of the people!
God help us! Now there's a baby Bush on the other side of the border!

Posted by: Arthur Raul Arroyo | July 7, 2006 01:32 PM

To those who say that AMLO should take fraud lying down for the good of stability, etc, there's one thing I have to say.

If it's good enough for Yushchenko,
It's good enough for AMLO.

The double-standards are amazing. Had Ukrainian forces shot the protesters you would have called for the bombers, but you'll be cheering if Mexican forces gun down hundreds, if they think it's necessary.

Let's not forget the fact that in Belarus, Lukashenko's assets (such as they are) in the US were frozen because of an election deemed fraudulent, and why? One-sided media coverage of the campaign, supposedly. Well, everyone concedes that this was the case in Mexico. Why not freeze Calderon's and Fox's US assets, just to be fair.

Deux poids, deux mesures.

Posted by: r | July 7, 2006 01:34 PM

But how is Halliburton involved? They have to be involved. Doesn't every conspiracy involve Halliburton. BTW, this is a MEXICAN election, not American or European and certainally not French. Stay focused people. A Que Saber Perder!

Posted by: Che is Dead! | July 7, 2006 01:48 PM

The simple fact is that there is a half a percentage point between these two. (Which is a compelling reason for a future law providing for runoffs, when no one has 50%) Assuming for a moment that EVERYTHING AMLO says about fraud and manipulation is true, the numbers might move half a point to his favor. Of course, then Calderon will start screaming about numbers in places like Tabasco and other PRD controlled states. And it might move back by half a point.
At the end of the day, it was a very close election and someone is going to have to lose. If AMLO has proof (proof, not wild unfounded accusations, remember his comment about a "500,000 vote" lead on election night. Based on what?) then let the TRIFE rule on it. But, until that happens, by organizing street protests etc, he is only setting himself up for a fall.

Posted by: Jerry Bourbon | July 7, 2006 01:54 PM

Illegal Aliens damage in the USA....Maybe they should go to Mexico to protest for their rights instead of Invading the USA & Protesting if Mexico is so Great go there to change the Corruption instead of bringing Mexico here to the USA!

62% of all "undocumented immigrants" in the United States are working for cash and not paying taxes, predominantly illegal aliens, working without a green card;

95% of warrants for murder in Los Angeles are for illegal aliens;

83% of warrants for murder in Phoenix are for illegal aliens;

86% of warrants for murder in Albuquerque are for illegal aliens;

75% of people on the most wanted list in Los Angeles, Phoenix, and Albuquerque are illegal aliens;

More than 380,000 "anchor babies" were born in the United States in 2005 were to parents who are illegal aliens; making those 380,000 babies automatically U.S. citizens. 97.2% of all costs incurred from those births were paid by the American taxpayer;

More than 66% of all births in California are to illegal alien Mexicans on Medi-Cal whose births were paid for by taxpayers;

24.9% of all inmates in California detention centers are Mexican nationals here illegally;

40.1% of all inmates in Arizona detention centers are Mexican nationals here illegally;

48.2% of all inmates in New Mexico detention centers are Mexican nationals here illegally;

29% (6 30,000) convicted illegal alien felons fill our state and federal prisons at a cost of $1.6 billion annually;

More than 300,000 illegal aliens in Los Angeles County are living in garages;

More than 53% of all investigated burglaries reported in California, New Mexico, Nevada, Arizona and Texas are perpetrated by illegal aliens;

More than half of all gang members in Los Angeles are illegal aliens from south of the border;

More than 43% of all Food Stamps issued are to illegal aliens;

More than 41% of all unemployment checks issued in the United States are to illegal aliens;

58% of all Welfare payments in the United States are issued to illegal ali ens;

Nearly 60% of all occupants of HUD properties in the United States are illegal aliens;

14 out of 31 TV stations in L.A. are Spanish-only;

16 out of 28 TV stations in Phoenix are Spanish-only;

15 out of 24 TV stations in Albuquerque are Spanish-only;

21 radio stations in L.A. are Spanish-only;

17 radio stations in Phoenix are Spanish-only;

17 radio stations in Albuquerque are Spanish-only;

More than 34% of Arizona students in grades 1-12 are illegal aliens;

More than 24% of Arizona students in grades 1-12 are non-English-speaking;

More than 39% of California students in grades 1-12 are illegal aliens;

More than 42% of California students in grades 1-12 are non-English-speaking;

In Los Angeles County, 5.1 million people speak English; 3.9 million speak Spanish;

More than 71% of all apprehended cars stolen in 2005 in Texas, New Mexico, Arizona, Nevada and California were stolen by illegal aliens or transport "coyotes";

47% of cited/stopped drivers in California have no license, no insurance and no registration for the vehicle. Of that 47%, 92% are illegal aliens;

63% of cited/stopped drivers in Arizona have no license, no insurance and no registration for the vehicle. Of that 63%, 97% are illegal aliens;

66% of cited/stopped drivers in New Mexico have no license, no insurance and no registration for the vehicle. Of that 66%, 98% are illegal aliens;

Less than 2% of illegal aliens in the United States are picking crops, but 41% are on welfare;

Over 70% of the United States annual population growth (and over 90% of California, Florida, and New York) results from immigration;

The cost of immigration to the American taxpayer in 1997 was a NET (after subtracting taxes immigrants pay) $70 BILLION a year, [Professor Donald Huddle, Rice University];

The estimated profit to U.S. corporations and businesses employing illegal aliens in 2005 was more than $2.36 TRILLION dollars;

The lifetime fiscal impact (taxes paid minus services used) for the average adult Mexican illegal alien is $55,000.00 cost to the American taxpayer in a 5-year span.

If New Jersey & other States did not have to Support the Illegal Invaders from Mexico, Property Taxes & other Taxes could be reduced all across the Nation!

When Illegal Aliens are deported to their own countries:

1. Our budget deficit will decrease by Billions & our tax receipts will increase by billions
3. Our crime & cost, both in money and human suffering will take a Hugh drop down
4. Our schools will make a great improvement in the education of our children & cost decrease
5. Innovation will increase
6. Medical care will improve and cost go down
7. Insurance cost will decrease
8. The increase in wages & the 20 billion currently going out of country now will create a large increase in demand for goods and services & new businesses and expanding business & our economy will soar
9.Even business that think they must have Slave labor to survive will find they are more profitable & new revenues & sources for profits will increase. (As Henry Ford discovered if he wanted to sell cars he must pay a livable so people could afford his cars)
10. Our standard of living will go up
11. But maybe the most important benefit will be stopping the influx of Illegal Aliens with their loyally to another Nation & hate for all things American, that if left unchecked will tear our society apart!


Posted by: Bill Lowe | July 7, 2006 02:04 PM

Che is Dead! If your "cuteness" pushes you to write in Spanish, do it right; it's "hay que saber perder." But this is a MEXICAN election; therefore, we should all be writing in Spanish (I can also make up illogical statements). The only one who has been insisting in "conspiracies" is you. Why don't you read carefully the cogent comments above and reply with something substantive, instead of with your trademark mindless non sequiturs?

I have to take issue with something that Ceci writes. She seems to imply that Elba Esther Gordillo supports AMLO; not true. Her own party, the PRI, accusses her to be too close to President Fox. She proposed, I recall, Mr. Ugalde for IFE's presidency; the sorry Mr. Ugalde, by the way, who in my opinion should resign after his pitiful performance and unfortunate comment suggesting that following the legal path is offensive to Mexican voters (namely, the attempt by AMLO to contest the election in court, a legitimate right that nobody can deny him).

Posted by: pasilla | July 7, 2006 02:19 PM

Mr. Lopez Obrador has a lack of honesty and morality, he is manipulating the less educated and fed people in Mexico.

Mr. Lopez is not a democrat and has shown none respect to the law and institutions.

Mr. Obrador this election was not a complot: Over 1,000,000 mexicans counted the votes, including your representatives !!!!, good luck for the next time !!!

PS: I´m confident that Felipe Calderon will make Mexico a better place to live so our people living in US can go back sooner.

Posted by: Fernando | July 7, 2006 02:24 PM

Bill Lowe, while interesting, what exactly do your comments have to do with the Mexican presidential election?

And, rather than going to the effort to deport 10 million illegals, wouldn't it be much easier to jail and confiscate ALL the assets of the 100,000 or so Americans who are hiring them illegally? With no more jobs the aliens would deport themselves.

Posted by: Jerry Bourbon | July 7, 2006 02:44 PM

That Ceci "Watch me fabricate some Gore quotes via careful use of elipsis" Connelly would use a right wing rag as her source material. I think we can all expect the major US media to get with the groupthink soon enough, and declare the right wing candidate who will allow us beter trade deals to be the proper winner.

Posted by: Not a shock | July 7, 2006 02:56 PM

amlo has the right and obligation to fight, defend every single vote. all the way.

Posted by: betty | July 7, 2006 03:18 PM

what happens to the millons of votes that the ife president admited had not been counted? are the included in the oficial results? what about the material and ballots found in the trash? can someone explain

Posted by: lolis | July 7, 2006 03:25 PM

The non counted votes are votos nulos. They ammount to 2% of the total, which is the same percentage as in 1994 and 2000. Some people mismark their ballots.
Please source where you heard about " ballots in the trash"

Posted by: Jerry Bourbon | July 7, 2006 03:33 PM

It was not "millions" either, more like 900,000. Get your numbers straight.

Posted by: Jerry Bourbon | July 7, 2006 03:34 PM

No matter who wins (and I prefer Obregon, but what really matters is which candidate Mexican voters prefer), I am concerned about the possibility of instability in the country because it appears to be intensely divided. Also concerning is the possibility of increasing human rights violations.

Posted by: MC | July 7, 2006 03:43 PM

Oops! I mean Obrador! But I base my remarks on having lived in a working class area of Mexico City, as well as in Central America.

Posted by: MC | July 7, 2006 03:45 PM

Altough I still believe that Mr. Ugalde was not up to the job, Ceci got the quote wrong. Ceci's interpretation:

"López Obrador's challenge was a slap to every Mexican who voted..."

My translation of the quote:

"...questioning IFE is questioning the hundreds of thousands of Mexicans" who worked on Sunday in the election...

(words outside quotation marks seem to be the El Universal newspaper reporter's)

Nothing fishy here, I want to believe; Ceci provides the link, for anybody who reads Spanish to compare and contrast.

Posted by: pasilla | July 7, 2006 03:50 PM

PAN is comprised overwhelmingly of the middle-class in Mexico. The stereotype that it is a rich person's party is outdated.

Posted by: Greg | July 7, 2006 03:50 PM

Mexicans deserve the right to verify these elections are as clean and transparent as IFE claims them to be. Whether AMLO lost or won these elections, we need to count vote by vote in order to begin trusting the system. Who can trust the system after all we have gone through in Mexico for ages?

I certainly don't want another 6 horrible years of organized crime, corruption, injustice and poverty for my country. Let alone an arrogant president like Calderon would be. I am very proud of Lopez Obrador for standing up and defending our rights. If there is anyone who goes by the law, it's Lopez Obrador.

Posted by: Karla A. Reséndez N. | July 7, 2006 04:14 PM

As a Mexican who lived in the US for a long time and returned to live in my native country a long time ago, I can't but be amazed at the comments that are made by people who think they know about Mexico without having lived there. It is true that there is a lot of poverty. But, it is not product of the current Federal Administration. Most of our current situation is due to 71 years of one party rule backed by the US.

All of the opposition, including the PRD that is now claiming electoral fraud, helped to design the current voting system which in my opinion is almost foolproof. I can speak of this because I was president of a voting place in the 2000 elections and have first hand knowledge of the methodology. The PRD presidential candidate and his team are taking advantage that not all Mexicans really know how the system works to their own benefit. Of course, how we organize our elections is of little interest to foreigners so you guys believe what ever the media tells you.

I read in several American news services that Calderon won after a recount. The truth is that he won after the official tally that was conducted according to the schedule that is defined by Mexican law. Any other results (exit polls, fast count, PREP) given prior this tally are to considered only projections and have no legal validity.

Also, by law the Federal Electoral Institute's only function is to organize the elections and tally the votes. They can not declare anyone the winner. They only inform the results. The Federal Electoral Tribunal is the one that validates the legality of the elections and declares a winner. Please remember that in Mexico we elect a President by direct vote and by majority. The election can be won or lost by one vote.

These elections were very close because of polarization that the PRD and their candidate promoted. They painted every other candidate as the rich man's lackey and Lopez Obrador as the poor man's savior. In my personal opinion, Lopez Obrador is not a leftist but an opportunist. He left the PRI not because of principal but because they didn't give him the candidacy for the governorship of Tabasco. He has taken advantage of the support of Hugo Chavez and has attacked our current President in public speeches. If anyone is to blame for the lack of unity in Mexico it is he. He ran the most corrupt government in recent times in Mexico City and has blocked all efforts to make the use of funds public during his administration. His profile in your paper was probably written by his press corps and that is why it is so positive towards him.

Please, try to be objective in your account of the facts and try to understand what is happening by listening to both sides of the arguments.

Posted by: Tim Gonzalez | July 7, 2006 04:33 PM

In this tight of a race, for the good of the integrity of the Mexican electoral process, all of the ballots should be recounted. Since there have been discrepancies, Lopez Obrador will be able to discredit a Calderon administration and cast doubts on its legitimacy for the next 6 years if this is not done. If the ballot recount confirms Calderon as the victor, this takes that ability away from Lopez Obrador, and confirms that the electoral process is sound and transparent. How can anyone lose, unless Lopez Obrador is actually the true winner, in which case Calderon has no right to be President anyway.

Posted by: David B. | July 7, 2006 04:36 PM

This is for Karla: The votes have been counted (vote by vote) this sunday by ordinary citizens in presence of your party representatives and in presence of whomever wants to be a witness. In the recount of the acts, everybody, as a citizen,had the right to witness the recount, the representatives of your party signed the act because they were satisfied with the results in it. Not recognizing the results is not recognizing the citizens (who gave their vote to any party) who counted the votes.And sure, AMLO has defended his votes closing streets, highways and oil sources, the only instance able to open all of the boxes is the federal court, so tell your candidate to tell this to the president of the court. And I am mexican, as I think you are also, who gave his vote to Calderon. Not everybody gave his vote to peje (AMLO).

Posted by: Antonio | July 7, 2006 04:46 PM

Dear Lolis,

The millions of votes that you refer to were not count in the PREP (Programa de Resultados Previos) because of inconsistencies. This program is meant to give Mexicans an idea of how the elections went and is not legally binding. All the political parties knew and had access to the database where these balloting reports were. In fact if you consulted the PREP website you could see which balloting places had discrepancies. The PRD did not discover the missing votes. They were in plain sight. They just took advantage of the fact that most of their constituency dosn have access to a computer.

Posted by: Tim Gonzalez | July 7, 2006 04:49 PM

For David B.

The votes have been counted by more than 1.3 million ordinary Mexicans, on election day, in the presence of representatives of the competing parties or coalitions. During the official tally, representatives of all of the parties were also present and according to Mexican law there are only 4 reasons to open and recount the ballot packages. The PRD want all of the packages opened so that they could petition the court to annul the elections. This has happened before and precisely in Tabasco. The IFE can not apply the law according to the whims of the contenders. It has to apply it in defense of the voters. All of the voters not just those of the PRD. If you don't know Mexican election law, read up and then express an informed opinion.

Posted by: Tim Gonzalez | July 7, 2006 05:04 PM

Tim Gonzalez:

Thanks for your thorough explanation of the electoral process; it was really unnecessary. I just want to remind you of two little FACTS:

1) It was not the PRD that ran a media campaign calling AMLO "a danger to Mexico;" adds, by the way, that were ruled defamatory by the electoral court. PAN was ordered to stop their broadcasting. In addition, I have not seen a iota of proof of the claimed support of Hugo Chavez to the PRD. Innuendo is cheap.

2) Lopez Obrador attacked the President in speeches... I'd wish to remind you of a tall politician from Guanajuato who donned fake big ears in a session of Congress to mock up the then President Salinas; his name? You guessed it: Vicente Fox. I'm surprised that having lived in the US you cry surprise with political tactics.

Antonio, you contradict yourself. On the one hand you accept the right of AMLO and the PRD to contest the election in court; on the other, you condemn them for exercising this right: "Not recognizing the results is not recognizing the citizens..." You cannot have it both ways.

Posted by: pasilla | July 7, 2006 05:17 PM

Tim Gonzalez:

It's amazing how you accuse the PRD to foment class warfare. I'm reading your speech, typical of the right (paraphrasing): "I know what I'm talking about, you don't"; "AMLO constituency don't have computers" (ergo they are easily manipulable ignorants). The IFE refused to open all packages because of a limited interpretation of electoral law; we have moved on. It's being debated if the electoral court can order the opening of all packages. The desire of PRD of getting the election annuled is just your interpretation of the consequence of their request, not a fact. As I understand it, the election in Tabasco was annuled because multiple irregularities were discovered, not because all the packages were open.

Posted by: pasilla | July 7, 2006 05:36 PM

Oh and by the way, the electoral process is sound and transparent. Contrary to what our PRD friends would have us believe. Their current allegations of complots against their candidate have to stand up in a court. I would like everyone to remember that 27 million Mexican voters did not vote for him and he didn't receive the majority of the votes.

Posted by: Tim Gonzalez | July 7, 2006 05:39 PM

In Tijuana, the Baja California 4th and 6th districts were late reporting vote counts, because the PRD representatives kept raising objections to every packet of ballots. (See www.frontera.info, the local paper) This kind of behavior makes one wonder just how serious the PRD is about fraud. If they had real proof of fraud, one would think that they would denounce it, instead of fruitlessly delaying vote counts.

Posted by: Jerry Bourbon | July 7, 2006 05:43 PM

Pasilla:

It would surprise you to know that I am not on the right or on the left. If Cuauhtémoc Cárdenas would have run, I probably would have voted for like I did in 1988. But, the current PRD candidate is not that caliber of a man.

Posted by: Tim Gonzalez | July 7, 2006 05:45 PM

Antonio: Of course the votes were counted on Sunday. But in case you do not know, there were many dicrepancies on those numbers. What is wrong with doing a recount vote by vote? Are you afraid the results are not in Calderon's favor?

Another thing, I don't speak to AMLO but in case you do speak to your candidate, why don't you suggest him to apply the austerity plan AMLO proposed and cancel the pension Salinas de Gortari gets every month? People are starving in this country and at this point every penny saved could help others. And Pasilla, I truly like your way of thinking.

Posted by: Karla A. Reséndez N. | July 7, 2006 06:34 PM

dear mr. LOWE, here's a stat for you: 99.99% of AMERICANS are complete idiots.

Posted by: mike | July 7, 2006 07:10 PM

It should surprise nobody that the statistics quoted by Bill Lowe above are:

(a) copied wholesale from an article written by a right-wing think-tank ideologue, Heather Mac Donald, or from one of the many E-mails based on said article;

(b) mostly unsourced (read: invented by Heather Mac Donald) or wildly inaccurate.

A partial rebuttal of these statistics can be found at Snopes.com.

It is never too hard to figure out who invents scary, scary numbers like these. Run a Google search on distinctive phrases and you can quickly learn whether the source is nonpartisan, or an obvious ideologue.

Hint: trustworthy sources, whether on the left or the right, rarely offer the same shrill answers to every single topic they approach. And they rarely use inflammatory language to discuss public policy.

Posted by: Learn2Verify | July 7, 2006 07:14 PM

Mike, I assume you are not American. Please do not let your inferiority complexes toward Americans hang out here. If you are American, can we lump you in with the 99.99%?

Karla, cancelling Salinas' pension will accomplish exactly what? By all means, cancel it, he sure doesn't need it, but do not pretend that this is in any way going to help things.

Posted by: Jerry Bourbon | July 7, 2006 07:18 PM

Jerry,

Not only does Salinas not need his pension, it's peanuts compared to what he stole. He simply does not deserve it to begin with. I don't know what over 2,160,000.00 pesos could do for you in a year. But for a small sum of the millions of poor people that live on less than 4 dollars a day would make a huge difference if the government would use this money efficiently.

Posted by: Karla A. Reséndez N. | July 7, 2006 07:33 PM

Karla

2 million pesos would do quite a bit for me in a year. However, in the grand scheme of things, it will do nothing for Mexico. Taking his pension away will make people feel good, he will laugh and replentish it from his secret bank accounts, and the federal treasury will not even notice.

What could the poor of Mexico have done with the money AMLO's buddies were videotaped gambling with in Las Vegas?

Posted by: Jerry Bourbon | July 7, 2006 07:43 PM

To paint people who voted for Calderon as right wing nuts is just stupid. I'm liberal Mexican-American who supports the Democratic Party in the US and I voted for Calderon. I didn't vote for Calderon for his conservative positions, but because his effective and inclusive plan to run Mexico with freedom and transparency. Is also stupid to try to compare the US elections in 2000 with the elections in Mexico. Mexico has an independent, citizen run, with representatives from all parties electoral institute unlike the US where are run by goverments of the states. It is also different because 1 single vote makes a winner.

Posted by: carlos | July 7, 2006 08:02 PM

Don't be so sure the Mexican system is better. It is centralized, federal run, and only as good (and honest) as the people running the IFE. It has worked fine the last two elections. But, ONE set of crooks, and you have a stolen national election. For all the democratic whining about Florida, every independent count done by the media showed Bush's lead holding up. And, state controlled elections mean that you would have to perpetrate 50 frauds, not one to steal a national election. Mexico's system works great, for Mexico. (There is nothing wrong with the system in this election, it is simple a razor thin victory margin, and if AMLO had won by 200,000 votes, he would be demanding no recount, and Calderon would be impugning the honesty of the IFE.) I would not want a bunch of either Hillary Clinton or Bush people running an American IFE, though.

Posted by: Jerry Bourbon | July 7, 2006 08:14 PM

"In this tight of a race, for the good of the integrity of the Mexican electoral process, all of the ballots should be recounted"
The race was tight but that is not a reason to open all the ballot boxes and recount them again. They were counted and the tallies were recounted, period.
If the PRD wants a recount, they can't call for a total recount, that is not possible, they have to specify which ballots to recount, from what region, number of polling station, specifically those where they have evidence of fraud.
If they have no evidence then is not necessary to recount those specific ballots. We cannot recount or redo or have another election based on a suspicion of a single candidate, or everytime somebody losses in a tight election race. Because we need to be clear here. It is only that party the one demanding a recount, and only for the presidential election, how come they did not say anything about the senate and congress and Mexico City Government, the PRD won a lot in those elections.
Mr. Lopez Obrador is very good at manipulating the media. But in the courts, his arguments will not fly.
We had a clean election, they at the PRD had no complain whatsoever during all election, only at the end when the results did not favor them.

Posted by: Jose Flores | July 7, 2006 08:24 PM

What does the PAN have to fear (if they have already won) with a recount- even vote by vote? The recourse is absolutely within the constitutional rights of any and all parties. With a vote so tight, it behoves both parties to proceed with the recount--the PRD to overturn the dubious results-- not annul the vote, as some think; the PAN to lay to rest for six years any hint of wrongdoing and dirty tricks committed before, during or after the voting.
Call me crazy but if I were a journalist of these things, I would be looking back-- at the relationship between the IFE ( not the shining star that some seem to see it as) and el señor Hidebrando and his company Metadata.
Bare with me. The representatives of the IFE in every one of the some 30,000 casillas were to be chosen at random ( al azar). Metadata was in charge of providing the IFE with lists of people in each casilla who could possibly be a IFE rep. As I said, this was supposed to be done randomly. A search that said, "Show me all the women in the seventh district of Mexico City above the age of 35, whose name begins with the letter M." For example. Thing is, Metadata also had access to government lists that, just for example, showed the senior citizens who had received assisitance from the DF government in the seventh district in the form of food subsidies. They also had access to lists that showed who was registered with the PAN in the seventh district. It was not rocket science to do some cross referencing and come up with a list, ready for the IFE, of possible representatives who were also, low and behold, Panistas. The list of representatives that was presented to the IFE by the contracted company Metadata (owned by Felipe de Jesus' brother-in-law) in place of being non-partisan was 'chueca'--skewed, shaved, slanted, distorted- in favor of the PAN.
Why is this of concern?
Given the vehement endeavor by the PAN-gobierno to remove Lopez Obrador from the presidential race with the unsuccesful desafuero maneuver, any other possible intent to influence the voting results has to be seen in that light. Stacking the IFE representatives in a voting station in favor of one party is in fact a blatant attempt to influence the outcome of the vote.
A process that should have been randon and non-partisan had become, just the opposite--another anti-democratic tactic to prevent a legitimate candidate the possibility of participating on a level playing field.
If there was no vote manipulation after the polls closed; if there was no previous-to-the-vote cyber-fraud; if every single vote was registered correctly; if there was no error in the actas de escrutinio; then there is no need whatsoever of a recount. Otherwise, Mexican democracy, not any one political party, demands a judicial review of the voting by the Tribunal-- even if that means all the votes.

Posted by: Keith Dannemiller | July 7, 2006 08:44 PM

It is also a fact that the reason why the PRD wants to open all ballot boxes to count vote by vote is because of the 2000 ruling of the Electoral Tribunal (that created a precedent) that annuled the election in the state of Tabasco due to the massive opening of ballot boxes. The logic of the tribunal was that since representatives from all the parties counted the votes and all had the chance to voice irregularities when the official tally was taken place, to open a majority of the ballots to re-count meant that the election was seriously tainted. What the PRD is trying to do is to say that there are serious irregularities (which almost all of them didn't stand in the official tally) to open all of the ballots to count all the votes and have as a consequense to annul the whole election, regardless of who won. That is the reason and not to re-count all the votes that a system that they help design already counted. And I say is a fact because of what the spokesman for the PRD said today on radio in an interview in Radio Formula when asked about the strategy to follow. I'm not quoting because I didn't recorded the show, but basically he said that thay wanted to open all ballot boxes to re-count the votes and that yes, that a consequence would be to annul the election. When asked if that was the only strategy he added that they would also argue that the current president favored Calderon, negative ads that in their opinion, where not stop soon enough by IFE and therefore unfairly supported by IFE, etc. All of these would annul the election.

Posted by: carlos | July 7, 2006 08:54 PM

Jerry, where you are wrong is to say that the IFE is run by the parties. The IFE is run by independent citizens with representatives of each party. Although is part of the Mexican state, is independent from the goverment, even finacially.

Posted by: carlos | July 7, 2006 08:59 PM

The only proven dirty tricks in this election were on the part of PRD. We watched on tv here as they raided an accounting office in Sautillo where the PRD was handing out food parcels in exchange for a pledge to vote for their candidates. Can anyone point to a proven case of cheating by PAN anywhere in Mexico?

Posted by: Greg | July 7, 2006 09:02 PM

Keith, unfounded speculations and right out lies from PRD talking points. Independent audits (2 of them, one before this speculation came out and one right before the election) cleared IFE from any relationship with Calderon's brother in law.

Posted by: Carlos | July 7, 2006 09:10 PM

What;s next? AMLO will go to the Zocalo Saturday in the old style. Someone asked him at a press conference why not use the mass media to make your case to whole country instead of filling the plaza here in Mexico City. He declined to give a full answer, but he rejected the idea.

I suppose it could be argued he will get lots of news coverage for free as the media just love a big rally-- great video.

But the real news begins Monday when Calderon starts getting his transition team together. As the weeks go by with AMLO pushing his legal complaints in the TRIFE, Calderon will gain more and more momentum and be recognized as the de facto president elect.

Now, having said all that-- I will give this to the many lefties from the United States, Mexico and elsewhere who have posted messages here-- If senor Lopez Obrador really has substantive proof of fraud and it is true that thousands of ordinary citizens who volunteered to help run the voting process really were involved in a vast conspiracy, then the election should be overturned and he should be declared winner. On that day it will be hard to find carnitas because all the pigs will be flying!

Posted by: Goyo | July 7, 2006 09:27 PM

Carlos:
Tell me if this from El Universal (julio 7 de 2006) is a 'PRD talking point'.

Permanente pide a Canales aclarar caso Hildebrando


- A A A +
Francisco Reséndiz
El Universal
Jueves 06 de julio de 2006

La Comisión Permanente determinó que los secretarios de Hacienda, de Desarrollo Social, de Energía y de los directores de Pemex y del SAT comparecerán ante el Poder Legislativo para aclarar los contratos que firmaron con Hildebrando y Metadata, propiedad del Diego Zavala.
Ayer el órgano aprobó la comparecencia del Secretario de Energía, Fernando Canales, la cual se suma a las aprobadas el 14 de junio para que Francisco Gil, Teresa Aranda, José María Zubiría y Luis Ramírez Corzo expliquen los contratos firmados con el cuñado de Felipe Calderón.

I know you will say, 'but this is not the IFE' . And yes you are correct. But data from the above entidades can be useful for a company compiling lists for the IFE, which Metadata did. No?

Posted by: Keith Dannemiller | July 7, 2006 09:39 PM

Jerry,

That is why I said, "would make a huge difference if the government would use this money efficiently". When I say this, I mean use it to start a program in a small community to help the less fortunate. Don't get me wrong. I am very much against corruption and I'm glad Bejerano and the rest of the corrupt guys in AMLO's team were caught. I would give anything to have atleast one of the ex-mayors or ex-governors (all priistas) from my state get caught with the millions they have stolen but they seem to get away with it somehow. I guess they are just real pros when it comes to stealing.

Posted by: Karla A. Reséndez N. | July 7, 2006 10:18 PM

IT DOES NOT MATTER IF THE (PRI)(PAN) OR THE (PRED), THE MOST IMPORTANT THING IS THAT THE MEXICAN PEOPLE HAVE A REALLY DEMOCRATIC LEADER AND TRY NOT TO IGNORE THE MOST BASIC NEEDS WHICH EVERYBODY KNOWS SUCH DESPERATELY NEEDING JOBS, MORE HELP FOR THE ELDERLY, HEALTH CARE FOR THOSE THAT DON!T HAVE IT, AND MOST OF ALL, FIGHT CORRUPTION AND CRIME! OVERALL NOT TO GIVE TOO MANY BREAKS TO THE RICH.

Posted by: MARIO SERECERO | July 7, 2006 10:27 PM

We are going round and round in circles, like "la mula en la noria." The situatios is clear, from a procedural point of view:

1) The election is over and has to be qualified by the court (TRIFE).

2) The electoral institute (IFE) has generated numbers that will be contested by the PRD; this is completely legal.

3) PRD should present evidence of claimed irregularities; they may petition for a total recount.

4) The court will decide; there are three possible scenarios: a) results stand, and Calderon is declared President Elect; b) Lopez Obrador is declared President Elect, because PRD produced enough evidence to change the results; c) election was so irregular that gets annuled. If the election is annuled, a provisional President is appointed, who shall call to new elections in 1-2 years.

All the rest is speculation. Some of us believe that recounting all votes would legitimate ANY CANDIDATE's victory and strenghten the institutions; some others, affraid that their candidate of choice may lose, oppose the total recount. We have to wait and see, flying pigs notwithstanding...

Posted by: pasilla | July 7, 2006 10:29 PM

27% of the Mexicans in the US today migrated there within the last 5 years. That should be enough proof that the PAN's economic model is not working for the vast majority. Six years of more of the same will mean a more radical adjustment.

Posted by: yo mismo | July 7, 2006 11:03 PM

Total Recount. Why? Didn't we count correctly the votes the first time in the presence of representatives of all parties and international and local observers? And when we counted the votes,Didn't we make a document stating the number of votes for each party and the number of votes canceled? And then, didn't we count these documents (actas) again to get the final result? And during the process of recounting these Actas, didn't all parties have the opportunity to raise any complaints and even to open some of the ballots and count them again?
We don't need to recount everything based on suspicion, already the European Union observers stated there were no irregularities in these elections, and many other international observers are also saying the same thing.
Mr. Obrador can't just admit he lost. That is all. And as a Mexican who freely voted and participated in the organization of the elections together with more than a million more mexicans, I am deeply offended and concerned about Mr. Obrador's claims. How many times are we going to count to have people happy about the results?
Mr. Obrador has not shown his own Actas, if he won the elections, he must have these actas that probe he did. PAN and Felipe Calderon have the actas, and they won.
Mr. Obrador and the PRD knew all along they had lost these elections from the very first moment the polls closed because that is the way our election system works, the parties know when they win or lose and they know who won. The IFE, our electoral institute only recounts the Actas and declares who got the most votes. Our system if totally transparent.
You should investigate first before posting your ridiculous opinions here. By the way, the PRD won many seats in congress and senate and Mexico City Government and many other municipalities and is not challenging any of those results. Why only the presidential elections?
Mr. Obrador does not have any respect for our people. He lied to many of his followers telling them that he was 10 points on top of the other candidates. And many of his followers believed him and now they believe when he claims fraud.
All the oppossite, Mr. Felipe Calderon and his team publicly said the race was very tight and that they may win or may not. They said this to their people and his followers, 15 million of them, went to the polls considering that. They were prepared to see their candidate win or lose, not so Mr. Obrador, who is a master at manipulating large uneducated population offering them all kinds of promises, very irresponsable.
I am so glad he lost and I am proud Calderon won.

Posted by: Jose Flores | July 7, 2006 11:13 PM

Antonio is wrong when he states that the votes were counted one by one. There is a lot of anecdotal evidence of polling officials refusing to open up ballot boxes despite specific requests from the PRD.

I cannot fathom by what Orwellian logic counting all the votes is dishonoring the citizens. Anyone who says the ballots have been counted correctly is plain wrong.

Posted by: David Crow.Mexico City | July 8, 2006 12:31 AM

José Flores is wrong when he states that the votes were counted in the presence of national and international observers. While official statistics aren't yet available, PRD coverage of polling sites was far less than 100%. As for international observers, they are simply too few to constitute effective oversight.

By the way, does anyone find it suspicious that the results of the IFE "acta de casilla" count aren't available on-line? (www.ife.org.mx) This is about 36 hours after the count is completed. What's going on? Presumably, these numbers can't change.

Cleanest, most transparent elections in history? Bu%*!^t on toast, my friends.

Posted by: David Crow.Mexico City | July 8, 2006 12:38 AM

"Antonio is wrong when he states that the votes were counted one by one. There is a lot of anecdotal evidence of polling officials refusing to open up ballot boxes despite specific requests from the PRD"

Posted by: David Crow

You are wrong, the ballots were counted before, at the polling stations and at the end of the day and in front of all representatives of all parties, and the polling "officials" are not officials, they are citizens who were chosen randomly from the population with the supervision of all parties.
Get Real. Candidates must first accept they have lost and assume the process was correct, then if they have one or ten thousand observations, each and one of them has to be justified.
You can dishonor the whole process and the work of a million people plus observers and media and others just because you or your candidate lost.
What happened here is that the left thought they had it won, and their candidate based his agenda on a populist base and he did not addressed the middle class, and anyone who thinks Mexico does not have a middle class, well, let me tell you, the middle classes of Mexico got Felipe Elected. Stupid Obrador thought he had it won because his meetings were full of poor miserable people carried in trucks to his events by huge numbers and the leftist media followed in the illussion but they forgot that those people does not get involve in the decisions of the country, they prefer to watch a soccer game than to go to vote and yes, most of the middle classes are catholic and obrador and the PRD made a big mistake attacking the catholic leaders.

Posted by: Jose Flores | July 8, 2006 12:48 AM

So where are the vote totals? I would like to see them. The parties did have representatives present at the polling places and at the "conteo de actas", and the PRD representatives have reported all kinds of anomalies, backed up with documentary evidence: more votes than registered voters at some polling sites, contiguous polling sites with exactly the same vote tallies, etc., etc.

La Jornada has been documenting this extensively: www.jornada.com.mx . Interested readers can consult back issues. It's the only Mexican newspaper doing serious investigative journalism.

If recounting votes or nullifying certain polling sites is "dishonoring the citizens", why does the Cofipe specifically allow for this?

Posted by: David Crow | July 8, 2006 01:02 AM

The PRD had the totals from the very moment the polls closed, on July 2nd at 6 pm. They and every party representative have a copy and they know what happened. You say that they have documentation of all kinds of anomalities. They could have reported all these anomalities in the same polling stations and the IFE representatives would have corrected them in the spot, yet they did not present any complains and all Actas de Escrution are signed by all party and IFE representatives and that is why after that, what counts is the Actas de Escrutinio.
This is very simple, if there are 100 votes at the end of the day, the IFE representatives count the votes and you and the other party representatives observe and can stop any anomalities right there. At the end of the counting, a document is produced: Acta de Escrutinio and the IFE representative and all party representatives, you included receive a copy. So you and evey party representative knows who won that day. And then the IFE District gathers all these Actas from all polling stations, and again, in the presence of all party representatives, the IFE representatives recount all actas and if a party representative has any observations, for example, the number of ballots does not match your acta, you show this and the IFE are obligated to open and recount those specific ballots but if you come and say open all ballots because I have a feeling there is something wrong here then they don't have to do it.
And by the way, La Jornada is not a newspaper, it is a radical communist panflet supported from communist, marxist, radical people from UNAM, a university that all mexicans support with our taxes and that produces nothing but losers and radical communists and socialist and anti-americans because the professors there are permanently brainwashing the students. You can verify what I am saying, just type Fidel Castro in the search box of la jornada and you will see all kinds of friendly articles about how he and Hugo Chaves are the real heroes of Latin America.

This is the real story:
In the night of July 2nd. I saw the faces of the PRD officials at their headquarters, the tv stations were looking for them and they would not give interviews, they had sad long faces, they knew they had lost. And yet they came forth and declare themselves winners. Mr. Obrador lied to all Mexicans that night declaring himself winner, he quickly gathered a bunch of people at the zocalo. But Mr. Calderon was cool, he came out and set the record straight. Because he and his people knew they had won. If you learn about how Mexican elections work you will see how all candidates and parties always know who the winner is.
The IFE counts the votes, but it is a formality, if during the counting, you see something different from what you have in your Acta, then you challenge it. But Mr. Obrador is not doing that, because he knows he lost, so he is playing the ignorance of the people like you David, who don't know how transparent the process is. Just look at the recent reports from the European Union observers, they covered more than 20 percent of the polling places and they have nothing but admiration for the process.
What offends is that Mr. Obrador if saying that the IFE and the PAN are committing fraud, get real, the PRD has won more that any other party in these and other past elections: Mexico City, Six States, thousands of municipalities across all the nation and their share of both houses of congress and senate has doubled and tripled in just six years.
From the very moment Calderon said to Obrador: Let us show all the Actas and verify any differences, but he will not accept that because he knows he lost and at the end of the day he will lose in the courts the same, but the same he will not recognize it because his problem is that he bet all his political capital in these elections, and he stepped over many people inside his own party, including Mr. Cardenas, who is waiting for this whole process to end to claim his position as leader of the party. Mr. Obrador is trying desperately to cancel the whole election because he knows after this defeat he is politically death, his enemies inside his own party are waiting for him. You see he did not go through internal elections to become the PRD Presidential Candidate, he took control of the leadership of his own party and ousted Cardenas and many others out and his team, all ex-salinistas like Manuel Camacho Solis and Marcelo Erbrad will not follow him if he has no power.
That is all, he wants to be in power because of greed. Forget the ideals of the left, this guy is not a leftist, he is an opportunist who kiddnapped the party of Mr. Cardenas.

Posted by: Jose Flores | July 8, 2006 01:36 AM

The IFE declared a winner based on vote totals. Where are those numbers? Why, more than 36 hours after the fact, doesn't the public have access to those numbers?

Posted by: David Crow | July 8, 2006 01:41 AM

I think what a lot people in the United States and other countries do not see about this is the fact that even though Obrador is very popular in the DF and the south of the country, he is not in the Northern States and in the Bajio, In Nuevo Leon for example, he got less than 8 percent of the votes and that is because most of the northern and central states usually vote for either PAN or PRI.
The northern states of the country are much more prosperous than the south, where the poverty and unemployment soar and where Obrador's offers of welfare get good response. But his polarizing speech antagonize many small business owners and middle class citizens in north and central states. We voted for Felipe Calderon because is a well known Panista and in these regions Mr. Obrador would never gather those huge meetings he is able to organize in the zocalo.
I think the world of Mexico City, his huge popularity there and near areas affected the way he saw the elections.
But, repeteadly in Mexican history, the northern states are the ones who usually get to chose the Presidents, because even though these states have less population, the people have better educational levels and the people vote as much as they do in Mexico city, but in Guerrero, Oaxaca, Veracruz, Tabasco,Chiapas and the rest of southern states, exept Puebla, are vey poor and people there have a huge abstensionism.
That made the difference in this election in my opinion, of course the campaign of spots and other factors also play, but the task at hand for the PAN and for Calderon was huge, Obrador had been in campaign for 4 years, and some event like the desafuero had increased his popularity. A lot people are very passionate about him, but he was never popular in the north and central states.
I think the lesson for him and other is that the North and Central states, at least for a while, will continue to choose presidents, it happened with President Fox, the north voted him and it happened with Calderon this time.
But there was never any fraud. Obrador knows it, he is desperate, he is gone. He is 52 or so, and in six years he will be too old to run against young and very popular PAN candidates from the north like Calderon.

Posted by: Jose Flores | July 8, 2006 02:06 AM

You say he got less than 8% of the votes in Nuevo León. Where did you get that information? Why aren't the totals available, polling place by polling place? I would like to see the results myself and analyze them.

Posted by: David Crow | July 8, 2006 02:15 AM

AMLO got 15.97% of the votes in NL. The results are available, state by state and district by district on the PREP count. Go to
http://elecciones.reforma.com/prep2006/PRESIDENTE/nacional_Pre.html

Of course, as you undoubtably know, Reforma is part of the vast right wing conspiracy, so they probably manipulated the results.

Posted by: Jerry Bourbon | July 8, 2006 03:51 AM

Karla, I am sorry I did not respond earlier, I was at a baseball game in Ensenada...

I think no reasonable person would disagree that most of the PRI are a bunch of rats, including Salinas and Madrazo. The problem is that 90% (Pasilla may attack me on this, maybe it is only 85%) of the PRD is ex PRI. Remember Macedonio? Cardenas, AMLO, Camacho Solis, Munoz Ledo, Martinez Veloz here in BC, and on and on are all ex priistas. And the PRI breeds rats. It stretches the imagination to believe that they all got honest all of a sudden upon leaving the party. The PAN are no angels, especially where they have been in power for a while (which is why in Tijuana Jorge Hank Rhon (ugh) got elected last year, as a rejection of corrupt panistas.) but, over all, they are MUCH more clean than the PRI. and, by extension, than the PRD. That, combined with the thuggish behavior of a lot of the perredista base, which is something you NEVER see from the PAN base makes me very leary of AMLO.

Posted by: Jerry Bourbon | July 8, 2006 04:01 AM

Mr. Obrador's claim are baseless since they are out of time and form.
The moment the counting of ballots did not favoured him he demanded a recount and threaten to challenge the IFE first counting even though the IFE had not finished counting.
His representatives should have stated the claims during the counting, but since they did not see anything wrong they did not. No AMLO is contradicting them.
He is lost. Nobody, now, nobody, not even the courts, can open all the ballots, they will have to open each one specifically for a justified reason and the PAN is in its own right to defend itself.

Posted by: Jose Flores | July 8, 2006 05:33 AM

Hey people, wake up!!!

Regardless of the outcome, the election was a tie. Neither of the political camps was strong enough to overwhelm the other (as many supporters on both sides craved and are still craving). Who cares who won the presidential election. At this point what should concern us is if said elected president will have the capacity to finish his six year term. The Congress is completely divided in thirds so political stagnation is expected. A third part of the electorate feels cheated. What we need in Mexico is political reform. In a semiparliamentary regime, this kind of winner-takes-all outcome could have been avoided while convergence between the different parliamentary factions would have been encouraged. We Mexicans continue to think about elections in a "caudillista" approach disregarding the fact that the foundations for the next government have been laid down in the Congress.

Posted by: fco./ DF | July 8, 2006 06:12 AM

As we discuss, leaders from around the world are already congratulating Felipe Calderon. He won. That's it and Mr. Obrador can jump and sing and cry and call for meetings and take his case to court and else, but all to no avail because at the end of the day, he lost. Be it because of his own mistakes, because of his colaborators or the many divisions and tribal conflicts in his party or because of the campaign strategist of Calderon, in the end is the same, he lost.
Obrador has called for a big meeting at the zocalo and already some important people who were suppossed to go are not going anymore, because the newly elected president is moving quickly and intelligently and he has more to offer than Obrador, I am talking about the Labor Union of Telmex and other as important as well, labor leaders who joined Obrador in the last weeks of the campaign dreaming a big victory but that now see he is lost and the future as leaders as well, they are now talking to Calderon and negotiating. The people you will see in this meeting this saturday will be mostly radicals from UNAM and Atencos and EZLN who have absolutely no influence in Mexican politics at all and of course, the poor miserable people brought in big trucks and who do not know anything about what is at stake. And the usual gang of pseudo-intelectuals like Monsivais, Granados Chapa, all the staff from la Jornada, Lorenzo Meyer, Guadalupe Loeza, others will not go, at least they will not impersonate themselves physically there, but they will spread the word that is was a great meeting, I am talking about Carmen Aristegui and Victor Trujillo and Renteria and other frustrated leftist journalists.
But Mr. Calderon continues making alliances, the PRI is weak and confused now and Calderon has a lot to offer to them and the PRI knows it is better to destroy Obrador and to support Calderon, already the Governors of the PRI, 17 of them, are coming out on tv and talking about respecting the will of the voters who elected Calderon and they threatening the PRD and are now standing next to the newly elected president. They will find the support they need to strenghten their party.
PAN also got a vast mayority in Congress and the Senate. In Congress, we learned today that PAN will get 207 seats and it is fighting for other 3 and they will go to courts, as concentrated as the PRD was in the Presidential fight, they are now losing more positions in congress. And all Felipe will need to reach a Mayority to pass his reforms is 30 more congressmen, he has 207, plus 9 from Nueva Alianza, the party formed by Campa and Elba Esther Gordillo, and now the whole PRI, 127 or more newly elected congressmen will support him as Madrazo's influence quickly erodes and the destruction of Obrador is guaranteed. Same is happening in the Senate house.
All other parties, PRI, Alternativa and Nueva Alianza have ratified the results of the IFE and recognized the new president. Felipe will reign in and everyone knows that, in fact, as we speak, all those big business that supported Obrador, like Televisa and Tv Azteca and Carlos Slim are quickly forgetting about the loser and trying to catch the attention of the winner, knowing he is a wise politician who knows how to build alliances and is gaining power more and more. The court will ratify his victory in two weeks.
The whole business community is the happiest, the stock market is up, the Peso is up also, and the interest rates are stable, we are in for a happy ending. By the way, Obrador was suppossed to be with Lopez Doriga last night but apparently he refused because Doriga, who usually gave Obrador 30 minutes of his news program, was going to give him an interview of only 3 minutes! So of course, Obrador refused. Bye AMLO.

Posted by: Jose Flores | July 8, 2006 07:09 AM

I am not a Mexican citizen, but we in Venezuela are very much concerned with the actions of interference that the tyrant of Venezuela, Hugo Chavez, are being promoted and cast upon your country. Nothing is perfect, including your armored electoral system and when in dealing with a monstruous traitor and usurper as chavez you should better have the eyes open. Undoubtedly, millions of much needed funds here were diverted to support the four years campaign of Mr. Lopez O.
Just recently,Chavez announced here that he is ready to return his ambassador to Mexico, the same one that organized cells, castroite like, to control the Mexican population. Do not say that Mexico is different, same as we used to say that we are not Cuba. Only through a heavy fight at all political levels and on the streets we have been able to survive to crimes upon the people and incarceration of legal dissidents, to this moment. His expericence as an election robber will be put into effect this year and we may be lost for a long time as a democratic country. I would no like Mexico to fall in such hands as AMLO´s, because you will see Chavez giving direct instructions at Palacio Nacional. Beware my friends, the conspiracy set in move by the Foro de Sao Paulo, in which AMLO is a prominent figure, will only bring your country more miseries that you can figure out and worst of all. will dstroy your infant multiparty democracy to a terrible end.

Posted by: pedro | July 8, 2006 09:55 AM

Jerry-

You are evidently unaware that the PREP--Programa de Resultados Preliminares--is NOT the count upon which Calderón was declared winner. The PREP stopped on Monday, July 3. All parties acknowledge that the PREP was deeply flawed, and Luis Carlos Ugalde repeatedly said the PREP was not intended to declare a winner. (You can easily verify this by verifying the vote total for Calderón given by the PREP, just over 14 million, with that he was attributed later, over 15 million.)

When I ask for vote totals, I'm talking about the "conteo de actas" that began on Wednesday morning and concluded on Thursday. The IFE declared Calderón winner based on these numbers. They are AVAILABLE NOWHERE. Why not?

And by the way, district by district counts are insufficient. I want polling place by polling place. The IFE has these numbers--otherwise they couldn't have declared a winner--but for some reason has not made them publicly available, despite the fact that nearly two full days have transpired since the "conteo de actas". Again, why are these numbers not available?

No one here has answered that question. Jerry, I'm going to assume you didn't know the difference between PREP and "conteo de actas"; otherwise, your post is disingenuous and intentionally misleading.

Posted by: David Crow | July 8, 2006 10:44 AM

David, please learn that insulting your opponent is no sutstitute for logical arguement; it may work with the intelectual types you probably hang out with, but not in the real world.

The PREP count nationally was off by less than half a percent from the official count. It is a safe assumption that the state by state vote count is also similarly close. Thus, I would assume that the miserable 16% your hero got in NL is not going to change much, with the official count.

As to why are the polling place numbers are not available, you really ought to ask IFE, not me...

Posted by: Jerry Bourbon | July 8, 2006 12:02 PM

Jerry-

There was no insult; on the contrary, I gave you the benefit of the doubt. Touting the PREP numbers as a sign of transparency is, at the very least, mistaken. The fact that the official percentage was close to the PREP percentage proves nothing; both could be mistaken. It is also significant that the difference between the PREP and the official count is roughly Calderón's margin of victory.

Is it really so unreasonable to want to see the numbers, polling place by polling place? The PRD has alleged numerous anomalous voting patterns in the vote totals. I just want to be able to judge for myself if that's true or not. Is that so wrong? What convincing explanation could there be for the IFE's failure to publish these numbers? Technical difficulties? It's a spreadsheet with 130,000 rows and nine columns, for crying out loud.

SHOW ME THE NUMBERS ALREADY!!!

Posted by: David Crow.Mexico City | July 8, 2006 12:26 PM

According to the paper this morning, the PRD is going to challenge no fewer than 43,000 polling stations, mostly in Guanajuato, Jalisco and Nuevo Leon (PAN strongholds, where the populaton has been brainwashed by the vast right wing conspiracy), because, among other reasons, the PRD did not have representatives at all the polling places in these states.

Of course, the PRD had the legal right to have representatives at these polls, but chose not to, or could not find volunteers to do it. Now, this is further proof that the PAN stole the election.

For its part, the PAN is now thinking about challenging polling places in PRD strongholds, too.

Posted by: Jerry Bourbon | July 8, 2006 12:34 PM

David, it has 130,000 rows! That takes time. I have no idea where these numbers are, the IFE does not tell me. But I would assume they are going to show up sooner or later. If it was a big deal, don't you think the PRD would be screaming about it already? Since they are not, they probably either already have the numbers, or are not worried about them.

Speaking of numbers, the figures I want to be shown are those that show AMLO winning by 500,000 votes. He claimed this margin of victory in his victory speech Sunday night, based on "our figures". If he really won, why doesn't he release "our figures"?

Posted by: Jerry Bourbon | July 8, 2006 12:38 PM

The PRD has every right to challenge these polling sights, as does the PAN. Let the truth come out, and whoever wins, let the victory beyond all doubt. As things stand, there are many reasonable doubts. Perhaps the official results would dispel these doubts. Unfortunately, the results are NOWHERE TO BE FOUND.

Posted by: David Crow.Mexico City | July 8, 2006 12:44 PM

I was happy to see the comments by Jose Flores and Pedro. Jose makes a good point about Lopez Obrador not wanting to go on Televisa if they would only give him three minutes. He can't say anything in three minutes because he takes a two or three second pause between each word! He is a really tedious speaker.

That brings us to Pedro's comments, providing a much needed perspective from Venezuela, where the middle class failed to recognize the danger early enough and unite behind one party or candidate to oppose Chavez. Now Chavez has consolidated all power and has imposed laws that threaten opposition people with jail if they say anything critical about Hugo and his gang of Castroites.

One thing I will give Chavez, though, is that he can put words together. He is much better speaker than Lopez Obrador and I am sure he would have found ways to manipulate the AMLO government, had their been one. If Mexicans want to know just how lucky they are that Calderon won-- find
some Venezuelans who aren't Marxist fanatics, and ask them about what a mess their country is in.

By the way, I find it amusing how lefties in Mexico complained about the "negative attack ads" against AMLO that used the image of Chavez. I think that was entirely appropriate. Besides, how can it be that the left admires Hugo so much and then they get offended when someone compares their darling AMLO with Chavez?

Posted by: Goyo | July 8, 2006 12:52 PM

Jerry-

Come on. The IFE could get a spreadsheet with 130,000 rows on-line in less than an hour if it wanted to.

By the way, The PRD IS screaming about the numbers. I'm not interested in AMLO's numbers, or in Calderón's, but in the numbers on which the IFE declared Calderón the winner. I want to see them polling site by polling site.

Why is it so unreasonable to want to see those figures? Why isn't Calderón demanding that they be published? After all, he would be the main beneficiary of having his "victory" be put beyond all doubt.

Posted by: David Crow.Mexico City | July 8, 2006 12:59 PM

For us in the states and for those who care about the future of Mexico, post election commotion is very disturbing. ALMO is doing more harm than good. He should show some restraint for the sake of his county. Imagine if Al Gore did what ALMO has done. I understand the US is not Mexico but these premature demonstrations before an official certification does not inspire much confidence in a county which badly needs an international economic boost. If ALMO gets his way and eventually wins, Mexico looses. Democracies are not sustained when the power of mobs can over turn an election. ALMO should act like a leader and put Mexico's best interest first.

Posted by: JMM | July 8, 2006 02:11 PM

As an American with a Mexican wife and son, I care deeply about the future of Mexico. I fail to see how it is in Mexico's best interest for any president to assume office after an election about which reasonable doubts exist. I also object to the portrayal of the decision to mount peaceful protests as "one man's whim", as Calderón has stated. Over 14.75 million people voted for AMLO; I am certain that the vast majority of these people agree with the PRD's defense of their votes.

Mexican law specifically provides for electoral challenges. Mexico's constitution guarantees freedom of speech. Protest is well within the repertoire of democratic actions to make demands on political leaders--in this case, to count all the votes and dispel uncertainties about the election.

Foremost among these uncertainties, to me, is whether the official vote total really reflects how people voted at the polls. Having the official results is a first step in ascertaining the answer to this question. But, I repeat, they are NOWHERE TO BE FOUND.

Posted by: David Crow | July 8, 2006 02:26 PM

David-- The electoral institute is bound by certain laws that were agreed upon by all the political parties. It would be better, politically speaking, if they could publish everything right away. I wish they would, too.

I think Calderon won, but if there is going to be a cloud over his presidency, then, yes, it would be better for him and for Mexico to have all those votes displayed for public view.

The answer Mexican experts will give is that it is not the role of the IFE to do this, it is the role of the tribunal to judge the fairness and transparency of the election. I hope, frankly, they the tribunal will check out every complaint and do vote-by-vote counts where it is necessary. No doubt, the PAN lost a few votes here and there, as well. No human endeavor of this magnitude is ever perfect.

But AMLO should confine his efforts to the tribunal and the legal process instead of calling people to the streets to "put pressure" on officials. He is also acting irresponsibly in saying the nation's "stability" is at stake. This is simply code for, "you had better rule in our favor or we will shut down the roadways and spread violence and chaos all across the land."

Most of the Mexicans I know understand this and are afraid of what will come next. In a nation of laws, the candidate with a complaint should follow the legal process and not use threats to get his way.

Let's see what he says tonight at his big rally here in Mexico City. I hope for the sake of the wonderful people I know here in Mexico that he does not do anything to set this country back after all the progress that has been made here in recent years.

Posted by: Goyo | July 8, 2006 02:52 PM

David,

I hear you. But I don't think Jerry does. I reached that conclusion a while ago, and I let him know. It's puzzling how he felt insulted by you asking civil, logical questions. But anyway.

After hundreds of comments in several days, I detect a few patterns:

a) The PAN symphatizers are scared, in public or in private, that the victory of their candidate may vanish at the court. They are democratic only if that suits them. When the opposition wants to excercise it legitimate rights, demonstrating or challenging the results, they attack it.

b) Because of this fear, they keep re-living the election, recycling the same lies, half truths and innuendo; I'm convinced that in many cases they are victims of the PAN propaganda; they refuse to think by themselves, to be informed.

c) I'm not certain of a widespread fraud during the election; but I'm convinced that irregularites occurred, some, I'm sure, of the type documented by the NYT: innocent mistakes, which, however, multiplied by hundreds of thousands, can change the results of the election. I praise those who participated in the process; I believe some of you who claim complete transparency in their voting place; but nobody can vouch for all of the more than 130,000 voting stations. Invoking the opinion of a handful of international observeres sounds to me a little bit "malinchista;" this is a Mexican election, and it's the Mexicans who should be fully convinced of the transparency of the process.

c) The most troublesome trend is this pitting of North vs. South, incited, among others, by Jerry Bourbon. This is nothing new. I recall ominous scribbles on walls in northern cities saying "Make the Motherland, kill a chilango (habitant of Mexico City)." This arrogance, this bigotry cannot be used to govern a country of more than 100 million, with a divided Congress and a candidate who apparently won a little more than 30% of the votes (and here I speak about both leading candidates). As a Mexican, and an American, I fear for Mexico. Being better off, more educated, doesn't give me the right of considering myself superior to any other Mexican.

Posted by: pasilla | July 8, 2006 03:04 PM

I would translate "Haz patria, mata a un chilango" more as "Be patriotic, kill a chilango". This particular stereotype has been around a lot longer than the present election campaign, and is directed at chilangos, and their presumed arrogance, not at the south as a whole. On the other hand, watching any sports program in Tijuana, if they have a comment line, they will give a Mexico City number, and then another, 800 number, "for the provinces". This kind of thinking, that the world revolves around Mexico City, is not conducive to winning friends outside of the DF.

There is plenty of hipocracy up north too, many of the same people who scream about the US building a wall to keep out Mexicans want to build a wall to keep Sinaloans out of Baja California.

In the end, Pasilla, I think AMLO would have been a terrible president. However, if he had won, more power to him. If he thinks he was cheated, then he should use the TRIFE to make his point. The fact that he is instead convoking mass rallies in the Zocalo makes me think that he has no confidence in convincing the TRIFE of any fraud.

I believe that, rather than actual fraud, he thinks it was "unfair" that the PAN used negative advertising against him, and that it was "unfair" that more members of the PRD did not volunteer to be poll watchers.
In a free country, he should get used to negative ads, and the poll watcher situation is an internal PRD problem, not Mexico's

Posted by: Jerry Bourbon | July 8, 2006 03:35 PM

Jerry-

1) The PRD IS USING THE TRIFE!!! It has also called for peaceful protests in the Zócalo--as it has the right to do in a democracy that guarantees free speech.

2) It's not AMLO that's "unhappy"; it's also 14.75 million people that voted for him. This is not some personal whim or ego trip.

3) We don't need to speculate what AMLO and 14.75 million Mexicans (at least) are unhappy about. They have made their complaints clear over the past few days. They include:

1) All the states in which AMLO won have fewer presidential than congressional votes, something at odds with everything we know about undervotes (which always favor president over lower posts).

2) Polling places in which the number of votes exceeded the number of registered voters.

3) Many cases of contiguous polling sites, or sites in the same district, that contain the EXACT number of vote totals.

4) The possibility of "cyber-fraud". For example, two UNAM mathematicians who tracked the Wednesday-Thursday recount noted that the combined percentage of AMLO-Calderón votes was always around 71.5%, never varying more than +/- 0.5%. The possibility of this happening by chance is infinitessimally small. Also, according to Marti Batres of the PRD, in the majority of polling sites where AMLO received 200 votes or more, Patricia Mercado received 0 votes. The probability of this happening by chance is also exceedingly small.

These are just a few examples. Human error (or worse) can creep up at any number of points in the process of calculating, receiving, and reporting vote totals. No party, for example, supervises data entry of reports from the district councils.

Again, if we had the official totals, we could confirm or put to rest many of these assertions.

4) It is true that the PRD's problems of internal organization prevented them from covering many polling places. However, it does not follow that they have no right to complain about these places, or much less that the other parties could then do whatever they wanted.

Posted by: David Crow.Mexico City | July 8, 2006 05:20 PM

David, convoking demonstrations with threatening banners, like "Calderon will never be inaguarated" is not responsibly using the TRIFE.
The noises coming out of the DF just confirm everyone else's suspicions of Chilangos. "WE voted for AMLO, therefore, you (the 80% of Mexicans who do not live in the DF and environs) must accept him." What hubris. This demonstration is the best thing that could have happened for the PAN, as it will only unite the non-chilangos against AMLO.

Posted by: Jerry Bourbon | July 8, 2006 05:58 PM

According to El Universal, these are two of the more interesting signs in the Zocalo right now:
"Calderón no tomará posesión, López Obrador, presidente de la nación"
and
"Estamos listos señor, ¡Usted ordene!".

The second one sounds remarkably like a call to violence. The first is a thuggish threat.

Posted by: Jerry Bourbon | July 8, 2006 06:02 PM

Please do not believe these apologist of Obrador. he lost in the elections but his greed for power is more important than the stability of the country. As we speak he is taking to the streets stirring anger and hate and inciting people to violence in an effort to pressure and blackmail the courts to get what he did not get in the polls. That is no popular assembly, the only popular assembly in our country is the congress and all political parties are represented there.
Now many mexican leftist pseudo-intellectuals are playing his game cowardly, leftist journalist and analist with a hidden agenda to manipulate the public opinion in favor of obrador are now working, they are Sergio Aguayo, a leftist radical pundit who would like mexico to be like Cuba or Venezuela. Denisse Dresser, Ciro Gomez Leyva, Victor Trujillo, Julio Hernandez and his liers and fabricators from La Jornada, and all the usual gang communist radicals like Monsivais, Poniatowsca, Granados Chapa, all these people and the cowards from the PRD are following a crazy populist who has no respect for anybody, now he has taken the election to the courts and these coward journalists are saying he is correct even though he is at the same time stirring violence.
Our republic is at stake, you mexican PRD and Obrador fanatics who write in these newspapers, be aware of what is at stake in our country. The very stability we enjoy. The IFE is a clean and independent institute and the European Union and other observers have declared the elections were cleaned.
But these coward jounalist and their newspapers like La Jornada and Proceso are stirring hate and anger. Obrador lost and he did not accept the results and now if he losses in the courts he will not accept it again. His path is the way of violence and beg to these journalist I mention to tell the PRD followers the truth, and for someone to tell Obrador to stop and take the legal path and obey the law and be respectful. Our institutions are more important than the greed of one man.
If people follow him, there will be many problems, already our business men are having second thoughts about the future of our country and we do not have the conditions to create more jobs.
People like Obrador take opportunity of the weakness of institutions in young republics. Hugo Chavez did it in Venezuela, Fidel Castro in very happy watching us now too.
Please stop these. Please think about the future of our contry.

Posted by: Jose Flores | July 8, 2006 06:06 PM

López Obrador IS taking the lawful path. Challenging election results and peaceful assemblies are both LEGAL in Mexico last time I looked. Nobody is "blackmailing" the courts to obtain what they didn't get at the polls. Rather, they are expressing a simple demand: count the ballots right. And they expressed it PEACEFULLY. No incidents have been reported. Saying "López is President" is just as irresponsible as Calderón and followers saying he won. Only the TEPJF can declare a winner.

To call Granados Chapa, Monsivais, et al, "communists" reveals more about author of these comments than about their targets. This is redolent of McCarthyism, or the sort of fascism Mexico saw in the 1920's during the Cristero war. I was on an academic panel with Denise Dresser in September of last year. She has great personal distaste toward AMLO, but has the decency to call for the only measure that would put these elections beyond doubt: counting the ballots one by one.

I find it interesting that nobody addresses any of the irregularities I report above. If they are true (and if not, please PROVE THEM WRONG with polling place by polling place results), they are very disturbing.

By the way, I filed a request with the IFE's system of access to information today to get the results "casilla por casilla". They are legally obliged to respond in 15 working days. I also wrote electoral councillor Arturo Sánchez, whom I met once. I will be interested to see the response I get.

Institutions aren't automatically entitled to be believed. They have to perform well. The IFE had done so in 1997, 2000, and 2003, but was clearly unable to gain the confidence of a significant number of citizens this year--since well before last Sunday.

Finally, it's NOT the "greed of one man". The legitimate aspirations of nearly 15 million people are at stake.

Posted by: David Crow.Mexico City | July 8, 2006 08:24 PM

Jerry asked a while ago where it has been reported that election tally sheets were found in the garbage. See http://www.eluniversal.com.mx/notas/360330.html, http://www.eluniversal.com.mx/notas/360006.html

Posted by: Ben Davis | July 8, 2006 08:49 PM

Granados Chapa, Monsivais, Lorenzo Meyer, Denise Dresser, Ciro Gomez Leyva, Guadalupe Loeza and Julio Hernandez are all biased journalists and writers who favored communist, anti-semitic and anti-american causes. They worship people like Fidel Castro and Chavez and they are the kind of people who justified the terrorist who killed many americans on September 11. Don't believe me, read their writings and find out for yourselves.

Posted by: Jose Flores | July 8, 2006 09:02 PM

"Institutions aren't automatically entitled to be believed. They have to perform well. The IFE had done so in 1997, 2000, and 2003, but was clearly unable to gain the confidence of a significant number of citizens this year--since well before last Sunday"
Actually is the other way around. Candidates who have a stake in power cannot be believe automatically. You should ask Obrador first to take his case to the courts and probe it there in an institutional way. Respecting the IFE and the Court system and not calling on stupid meetings and assemblies no intelligent person attends.
Democracy does not occurr in the streets. It happens in the ballots.
He lost, he has lost before many times and has never recognized it.
He is a criminal and should be in jail.
Felipe won and he will be a great president.

Posted by: Jose Flores | July 8, 2006 09:06 PM

José-

I have read writings by all the people you mention. I challenge you to show me ONE statement by each of them that is pro-Communist or anti-Semitic. Just ONE. You won't be able to do it.

I also challenge you to PROVE WRONG allegations of irregularities. You won't be able to do this either. Why? You don't have the official results. NOBODY HAS THEM. WHY NOT? WHERE ARE THE NUMBERS?

No one here has answered my question: is it unreasonable to want to see a polling place by polling place tally?

Posted by: David Crow.Mexico City | July 8, 2006 09:10 PM

It is irresponsible and dangerous to say that Felipe Calderón has won the election. Only the TEPJF can do so, and it hasn't.

As far as I know, the only election López Obrador lost was to Madrazo in 1994 in an election so corrupt that even President Ernesto Zedillo, a fellow party member of Madrazo's, attempted to have him impeached.

And López Obrador IS going to the courts. He is also calling for peaceful civil demonstrations, as is his right. Questioning the intelligence of people who attended the rally (including my wife, who holds a Ph.D.--and they don't give those out to idiots) reflects more on the intolerance of the author of this comment than on people who go to peaceful, lawful assemblies.

Posted by: David Crow.Mexico City | July 8, 2006 09:17 PM

You and other PRD fanatics do not know how much damage you are doing, no only to your party or your cause but also to your country if you are a Mexican. Every step has to be taken institutionally.
Obrador got almost 15 million votes, but you forgot that more than 40 million people voted and a little more than 15 did for Calderon.
Our IFE institution is far more important that Obrador or Calderon or anybody else. They organize the whole federal elections, not only presidential, but also for senators and congress and PRD is not challenging the others, Why?
PRD is going to lose a lot by following this crazy stupid criminal who is fabricating a fraud. The European Union Observers already said it was a clean and transparent election and serious unbiased mexican intellectuals are also saying the same thing.
We will not be hostage of this thug.
He lost, and his little meeting assemblies do not scare us. We are the mayority and we have elected a new president who will be ratified by the courts soon.
Obrador has already stated he will not accept the decision of the courts, just like he never accepted the decision of the IFE and more than one million honest mexicans who counted the ballots on July 2. But the truth prevails, he has no support from anybody but radicals and the poor people was brought to the Zocalo today carried in trucks like animals, they did not even know what the whole thing was all about.
He lost. He has to accept it. In democracy you win and you lose.
Felipe Will Be a Great President.

Posted by: Jose Flores | July 8, 2006 09:21 PM

I thought this whole discussion about Calderon and Obrador was going to be over after the election results.
But we forgot this was Obrador. He had win otherwise it is a COMPLOT against him.
Poor obrador, he is always the victim of complots. I think he is already getting alone as people get tired of hearing the same story.

Posted by: Jose Flores | July 8, 2006 09:25 PM

Unfortunately, José has chosen to respond to legitimate questions by impugning the integrity and intelligence of those who disagree with him. He never responds to the substance of the allegations.

Felipe Calderón DID NOT WIN. Not yet, anyway. BY LAW, only the TEPJF can declare the winner.

José: please follow the law you claim to respect so much and quit saying that Calderón won.

Posted by: David Crow.Mexico City | July 8, 2006 10:03 PM

"Only the TEPJF can declare the winner"
The winner is the one who got the most votes and Felipe did and he has already received his confirmation from IFE. What the TEPJF does is to ratify the result and receive impugnations and decide on whether those impugnations are valid. They give the final count of the votes.
But obrador is a thug who recognizes no institutional authority when results do not favour him. And he will not prove me wrong. He has already stated he will not accept any result but his victory.
Funny he is not calling for a rerun, he is calling for a recount because he knows that is practically impossible.
He lost and by taking it to the streets first and not obeying the law he is only demosntrating he is a danger.
Well he was, but not anymore, now he will be only a folklore pal, a clown in a meeting calling for mobilization. He will lose the little support he has already.
This afternoon there only 250 thousand people, and mostly "acarreados" in a city of 20 million people, that is really nothing.
Calderon is so cool, easy going and speaks freely and has a very nice northern thing about himself, he is a real PRESIDENT, he would have never done what obrador is doing now, he would have accepted defeat just like he did before. By the way he has already received congratulations from Zapatero, Bush, Canada, Colombia and other countries as well. The European Union has ratified the transparency of the results and everybody in the world press already knows how mr. obrador likes to take court issues to the streets, we all learned that when the desafuero thing. He impresses nobody anymore.
Obrador is trashing his own leadership. It is really bad because he had a lot of leadership and he could have negotiated with it as a real candidate who contended, lost but had great support.
Had he thought about his country fellowmen he would be planning with Felipe great projects today. But the way it turned out, he chose to reject the results and insulted us mexicans who voted for Calderon.
And the PRD is losing so much credibility they will pay a very high price for this. All this videos of these demosntrations showing obrador with his party partners behind him inciting people's anger will be used against them in future elections and they will speak volumes of their republican and institutional attitudes.
The Republic and The Institutions are first.

Posted by: Jose Flores | July 8, 2006 10:26 PM

News from this newspaper:

López Obrador Alleges Vote Was Rigged

"López Obrador ignited the smoldering emotions of his followers Saturday morning, alleging for the first time that Mexico's electoral commission had rigged its computers before the July 2 election to ensure Felipe Calderón's half-percentage-point victory. In a news conference before the rally, López Obrador called Calderón "an employee" of Mexico's powerful upper classes and said a victory by his conservative opponent would be "morally impossible."
López Obrador added a new layer of complexity to the crisis by saying he would not only challenge the results in the country's special elections court, but would also attempt to have the election declared illegal by Mexico's Supreme Court. That strategy presages a constitutional confrontation because according to many legal experts the special elections court is the only body that can hear election challenges.
Calderón was declared the winner Thursday and has begun publicly presenting his plans for Mexico, even though López Obrador has refused to concede. European Union election observers have said they found no significant irregularities in the vote, and many Mexicans appeared to accept Calderón as their next president.
López Obrador's approach pairs legal maneuvers with mass public pressure. On Saturday, he gave a mega-display of street power, drawing tens of thousands of people into the center of Mexico City on a humid, drizzly afternoon"

Here is:
http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2006/07/08/AR2006070801010.html

There you go. That tells the story of what happened. Whenever there is fraud, newspapers report it themselves when the allegations are true. As it is. This is not true and that is why Mr. Obrador is taken his case to the Supreme Court already because he does not have a valid evidence to turn the results around.
He lost. Loser that cannot even admit it. Bad, real bad.

Posted by: Jose Flores | July 8, 2006 10:39 PM

100,000 thousand on a humid, drizzly afternoon? Sounds impressive, huh? Well, I just wish to recall the over 250,000 that dressed in white a little over two years ago to protest against violence and, in particular, against Mr. Lopez Obrador's kind of populistic rhetoric.

In any case, reading most of this blog has been an interesting task. It has reminded me of Mr. Lopez Obrador's political technique: Blast anything you disagree with. Hold steady regardless of the consequences, and let the bunch of sheep (sorry, the disenfranchised many that settle for a dime) be herded towards the wolves.

Posted by: HALP | July 8, 2006 11:02 PM

Once again, José, you are wrong. Article 174 of the Cofipe (Código Federal de Instituciones y Procedimientos Electorales) is very clear that only the TEPJF can declare the election winner: "The election concludes with a judgment and declaration of validity of the election of the President of the United Mexican States. In any case, the elections will have concluded when the Electoral Tribunal has resolved the last challenge filed ...."

According to the plain, unequivocal language of Mexican election law, NO ONE HAS YET WON THE ELECTION.

Interested readers may consult the law for themselves: http://www.ife.org.mx/COFIPE_completo1.pdf

José: Please follow the law you claim to respect so much and stop saying that Calderón has won. It is the height of irresponsibility to declare that any candidate has won. Declarations to the contrary, whether made by Felipe or AMLO followers, are simply wrong.

Posted by: David Crow.Mexico City | July 8, 2006 11:10 PM

Thanks for the chat. I found it most interesting too. We'll see who will be declared president in a month or two, and eventually, whether he was a good choice or not. I simply stated what I believed to be true. Being myself from northern mexico, and having voted for Calderon in what for me, looked like clean, transparent elections, I cannot but disagree with Mr. Obrador's allegations.
But we are nobody here to say what is true or not. I think the courts will tell us that and time will also tell us the true story of what happened.

Posted by: Jose Flores | July 8, 2006 11:13 PM

Unfortunately, calling people unintelligent, communists, sheep, etc., don't constitute rational arguments, but ad hominem attacks. As the art of rhetoric teaches us, speakers result to ad hominem attacks when they lack arguments.

I have not called into question anybody's intelligence, beliefs, motivations, etc. I have had one simple request all along: refute the allegations of anomalies with evidence. Nobody has addressed the substance of the alleged irregularities.

Someone, SHOW ME THE NUMBERS!!!!!! WHERE ARE THE OFFICIAL RESULTS????? Without these figures, we're all talking out our hats.

Posted by: David Crow.Mexico City | July 8, 2006 11:18 PM

I knew someone would "bite", and someone has... Funny, though, I expected a smart response and not a pseudo-legal one.

It is proven fact that, at least in Mexico, anyone who requires the use of Latin references in speech lacks better arguments. Having said that (which is only my opinion), the fact is that no one needs to address the alleged irregularities in the absence of evidence of such. Someone who cries foul is obligated to prove such foul. Accordingly, if Mr. Lopez Obrador claims there have been irregularities, it is his legal and factual obligation to prove them. In the absence of proof, his claims are mere ramblings of a disgruntled loser.

I will sit a wait for the results, confident that the rule of law will prevail notwithstanding the rhetoric and the thousands of humans who follow the flutist.

Posted by: HALP | July 8, 2006 11:32 PM

Emotions are running high. But name calling is not helpful. In one of the notes above someone mentioned a bunch of Mexican intellectuals and called them, among other things, "anti-Semitic," even though a couple of them are Jews.

I understand the resentment he feels concerning these "intellectuals," however. Many regular Mexicans feel frustrated when they see the so-called "intellectuals" of their country supporting old, anachronistic Marxist proposals. Here in Mexico leftists seem unaware of the fact that the Cold War ended and communism lost.

There were communist flags flying all over in the Zocalo Saturday. Although I did not see any today, I have many times here seen marchers carrying banners with Stalin's picture-- Stalin! The man killed millions of people, set up the gulag, murdered the flower of the Polish army before enslaving that country, etc, etc. But Mexican leftists think he is an alright guy.

So-- It is understandable that many Mexicans, such as some of the ones writing on this blog, do not want the left running their country. They want to continue on the path to modernization. They like the opportunities Fox has created for people to buy a house. They like the openness of government Fox introduced. They like the reforms Felipe Calderon has promised to implement. I don't think AMLO is a bad man. In fact, he is probably quite sincere in his zeal to help the poor. But he has no effective plan and some of what he proposed might disrupt the economy, cause a devaluation and drive investment away.

Some of these "intellectuals" around AMLO have a basic anti-USA attitude and always see the giant to the north as the problem, no matter what. They don't seem to understand that Mexico benefits from being next door to the world's most vibrant economy. They seem oblivious to the fact that Mexico is, in fact, competing with China and India for jobs and investment.

Filling the Zocalo will not do anything to improve Mexico's competitiveness with these Asian countries, nor will all the ranting and raving and waving of flags do anything to alleviate poverty.

Posted by: Goyo | July 8, 2006 11:52 PM

There are many alleged irregularities, which I outline above. Many could be easily proven or disproven if we had the official results. But, for whatever reason (and I, for one, find it odd that the IFE hasn't published these numbers), we don't.

It is lamentable that HALP chooses to impugn my intelligence ("pseudo-legal rather than smart") while avoiding addressing the substance of my arguments.

As for "pseudo-legal", I don't claim to be an expert on Mexican law. I do, however, submit that a plain reading of Article 174 reveals that, legally, no one can have been declared to have won the election. No one has rebutted this claim.

Hey, folks, how about less personal attacks and more RATIONAL ARGUMENTATION!

Posted by: David Crow.Mexico City | July 9, 2006 12:07 AM

Just a brief correction: you said that Elba Esther Gordillo is an AMLO ally. Actually, they are political enemies and Elba Esther has backed up from the start Calderon.

Posted by: Luis | July 9, 2006 12:09 AM

Luis,

Just to prove you are totally correct, I invite everyone to visit this link http://www.lopezobrador.org.mx/ and listen to the conversations between Eugenio Hernandez (Governor of Tamaulipas) and toad face, Elba Esther Gordillo. There is another conversation between Pedro Cericola and Eugenio Hernandez. Evidently, the Pri Governors got together and sold the votes to the PAN.

Posted by: Karla A. Reséndez N. | July 9, 2006 01:07 AM

Although the TRIFE has yet to rule, there are no concrete grounds for overturning the election, so I expect the Felipe Calderon will be our next President. Time to move on.

I have learned much from this blog. Thanks to Ceci and the Post for providing it.

Thanks also to everyone who has participated here. I've learned something from each of you - even when we disagreed. Best wishes to you all.

Posted by: Greg | July 9, 2006 01:58 AM

Elba Ester Gordillo is a worm, and her union is the reason why anyone who can afford it sends their children to private schools.

But, AMLO still lost the election.

Posted by: Jerry Bourbon | July 9, 2006 03:00 AM

David, you challenge people to "prove wrong" allegations of election improprieties. That is incorrect, in a situation like this, the burden is on your hero to prove that there was indeed wrongdoing. If the winning side had to "prove wrong" every wild accusation thrown at it, nothing would ever be settled.

It would appear that AMLO wants a recount in about 50,000 polling places. Suppose, David, that he gets this. If, after the recount, he still loses, will you accept his loss? More importantly, do you think the Mexican Mesiah will accept his loss, or will he come up with something else for the IFE to "prove wrong"?

I am not being facetious. AMLO has a proven track record of not being able to deal with criticism or losing, witness his calling a quarter million anti-crime protestors (who were also criticizing his DF govt) a part of the vast right wing conspiracy.

As a recount of this scale is probably illegal, I do not think this is what he really wants. I think he wants the election either anulled, or the TRIFE to just declare him the winner. Suppose, David, that this happens. What do you think will be the reaction of the 15 million Mexicans who voted for Calderon? What will be the reaction of the governors of all the border states? Will what is likely to happen strengthen or weaken Mexico?

Posted by: Jerry Bourbon | July 9, 2006 03:15 AM

Karla, "toad face". I like that. As mentioned above, the SNTE is a disgrace, even worse than the American NEA. But, let's not make the mistake that "toad face" is some radical PANista. Rather, she is a lifelong PRIista who was rather screwed by Madrazo, and creating Campa's candidacy, as well as supporting the PAN in this election was here way of screwing Madrazo back. I doubt her intellect would allow her to come up with a plot to screw both Madrazo and AMLO at the same time.

Does anyone on this little discussion know why the U S govt does not investigate the source of the funds that Gordillo used to buy her multimillion dollar home in Coronado, across the bay from San Diego?

Posted by: Jerry Bourbon | July 9, 2006 03:24 AM

This is from the mouthpiece of the GRWC (great right wing conspiracy) known as the Los Angeles Times, Sunday edition. Quoting AMLO:
"Lopez Obrador was hedging his bets. Meeting with foreign journalists Saturday before the rally, he said his party planned to file a separate appeal to the Supreme Court later alleging that the entire election was unfair."

If AMLO lost, the election MUST be unfair. That seems to be the underlying PRD logic of this whole affair.

Posted by: Jerry Bourbon | July 9, 2006 03:30 AM

Another lovely quote from AMLO:

"Under questioning by foreign journ
alists, he said he was confident of prevailing in the tribunal, but declined eight times to say what he would do if he did not."

In other words, it does not matter how the TRIFE rules, AMLO said he won and that is that.

Posted by: Jerry Bourbon | July 9, 2006 03:35 AM

Obrador demanded the following from the very first moment to the IFE:
"I ask, demand that the IFE respect our results"
It is the other way around. He has to accept the results of IFE. Period. If he has any complains he can take it to the court. The Mexican courts will then decide.
He as a responsible candidate should sit down and wait.
But he is not a responsible person. He is a thug and he is demonstrating it. None else is claiming fraud. Only him, and of course the usual gang of pseudo-intellectual apologist. But I do not worry.
Every time obrador speaks he damages himself more and more. Now he has told the courts that if the result does not favor him, he will take it to the streets.
That's it.
And by the way. Some people say that the IFE does not declare winners today, that is nonsense, tomorrow they will say the same about the court. Tomorrow they will say "only the people in the streets can declare a real winner" Mark my words.
Obrador lost and he went from trying to look presidential, to being a mere clown yeling in the streets and crying in public.
He looks tired and he should take a few days off and rest and think about his future and that of his party.
Whoever thinks the PAN is sitting down and doing nothings is totally wrong, they are now going to challenge the very victory of Marcelo Erbrad, several delegaciones and some positions in congress, and they are preparing to respond to obrador, not in the street, there is nothing there, but in the court. PAN has far more experience at winning at the courts than PRD or PRI and they have a pool of the best lawyers in Mexico.
Consider also, the very fact that with their 207 seats in congress that will automatically take place, plus the Nueva Alianza, that satellite party of PAN with 9 congressmen, all Felipe will need is less than 30 priistas to reach mayority in congress and block the PRD.
That explains why they are so frustated, they lost and they lost everywhere at a federal level.
In 2000, the first democratic presidential elections in Mexico, the North rule, because the north is far more educated than the south. We voted Fox and now we voted Felipe again.
This marks a tendency and it will stay this way for a while.
So you leftist fellow mexicans from the south, get used to it or teach your bigger but poorer population to vote.

Posted by: Jose Flores | July 9, 2006 07:00 AM

so who is going to write about the fact that the ife director is a SCHOOL CHUM of calderón and that the person who designed the software to count the votes is a friend of calderón?

Posted by: check it out | July 9, 2006 09:05 AM

If the PRD were composed of more sensible people, and that is not to say that there is not a significant minority of sensible people in it, they would look at how far they have come and take some satisfaction in it. In 20 years this party has grown quite large and powerful, displacing the PRI. But they should also reflect on why they cannot win outside the southern and central states. They should look at why their rhetoric and proposals scare the hell out of many Mexicans.

I think if the PRD spent more time analyzing their situation and tailoring their message to attract a larger part of the electorate they would advance far more than they will by filling plazas and waving communist flags.

It was interesting yesterday to hear some of the comments of people who were on the sidelines as the crowds passed through the streets to the Zocalo. Many ordinary Mexicans look on the PRD as a bunch of rabble rousers who will disrupt social tranquility and derail the economy. These people have something to lose and they fear the PRD because of that.

If the PRD were to look to Spain, the UK, Chile, Brazil or other countries where the left has come to power by becoming a moderate left they might have a chance at ruling Mexico one day.

I would now like to address another topic--poverty. AMLO said he wanted to put the needs of the poor first and this was commendable as far as it went. Just because he was defeated, and will ultimately fail in his legal complaints, does not mean that the PAN should ignore this pressing issue. Mexico cannot pretend to be a rising industrial power and a sophisticated, European-like nation if it has half its people living in poverty and for one of its most important sources of income depends on some 12 million of its people living in another country to send money back home.

Here is something to consider-- Mexicans pay far more for phone calls to the United States than people in many other countries that are far away from the United States. It is more costly for a Mexican immigrant to call home from Dallas or Chicago than it would be for that person to call France.

Telmex is still a monopoly and it is run by the third richest man in the world--Carlos Slim. The attitude of the richest of the rich in Mexico is part of the problem. The PAN does not represent those people. The PAN, if it is to be successful at all, must continue to be the party that respresents a middle class that is growing stronger all the time.

Calderon seems to understand this and has said the right things. He has some good people around him. Let's hope he can get a good start without all this election mess impeding his progress. Mexico does not have time to waste in dealing with these critical problems.

Posted by: Goyo | July 9, 2006 11:46 AM

Checkit out, the who the director if IFE is does not matter, as the IFE does not determine the winner. If there was fraud the TRIFE will deal with it. If there was not, AMLO is going to have to deal with the fact that he lost.

Posted by: Jerry Bourbon | July 9, 2006 11:50 AM

Jose Flores, please go into detail as to why the PAN is going to impugnar Ebrard? This is an interesting fact, if correct.

Jose makes a good point, as I have tried to make, that the PAN is not taking all this lying down. If the TRIFE rules that AMLO is the winner, or his thugs really start tearing things up in Mexico City, the you know what is going to really hit the fan. All the AMLO supporters on here seem to think that nobody voted for the PAN. If they are from Mexico City, maybe nobody THEY KNOW voted for the PAN. They should look around the country, especcially at the yellow/blue maps of electoral results.
Take AMLO's demands to their logical extension (that he be awarded the presidency period, regardless of any vote count.) and imagine that he gets his wish. What will be the reaction of the blue states???????

Posted by: Jerry Bourbon | July 9, 2006 12:32 PM

Jerry et al. get a life, men! If you are happy living from speculation, so be it. But I for one has gotten tired of your tirades. Things are moving on, despite all your vitriol. I'll wait and see. I, unlike you, don't repeat myself at nauseum. Calling names, making unsubstantiated allegations in this blog is totally irrelevant to what is going on. So, you are free to keep at it. I will only engage in arguments with somebody who listens, who's not so in love with his own voice and toughts that surrenders his critical thinking.

Posted by: pasilla | July 9, 2006 01:48 PM

Excuse me, pasilla, who exactly have I called names here, (not counting Gordillo)? I am sure you are tired of me, and the others who can see through AMLO's charade. The truth hurts. Get used to it.

I posted two direct quotes above from your hero. I did not make them up. What is your take on them?

Posted by: Jerry Bourbon | July 9, 2006 01:53 PM

As I have learned the "Comisión de Fiscalización del Instituto Electoral del Distrito Federal (IEDF)" has already accepted the preliminary evidence from PAN to nullify the elections in the DF. And the authorities there have to decide on it in the next few weeks also.
But the way I see it, the PAN has got the upper hand, what they are doing is trying to get the PRD to have to divert some of their resources to defend Marcelo Erbrad.
And it also sends a message to Marcelo Ebrad to stop supporting Obrador.
Yesterday the PAN gave all the spotlight for Obrador to have his show in the Zocalo. It serves two purposes, one, not to provoke anybody, and secondly and most important, it sends a message of moderation to a section of PRD that does not agree with what obrador is doing and who are negotiating with PAN as we speak. I believe these include some governors, congressmen, senators and local government officials.
The Problem is, obrador has got too radical. He has not slept well and it is affecting him. He is getting alone with the radicals in the party who want, like him, all or nothing for anybody.
I sincerely hope the moderate wing of PRD wins this situation. I believe the PRD is very important for our country, but it will destroy itself if it follows the path of obrador.
I believe in a matter of days, something will happen inside the PRD that will change everything. The country will be spared from crisis. PRD will come out stronger as a republican institutional and democratic entity capable of auto controlling its own forces. And Felipe will have a chance to call for reconciliation. I am optimistical.

Posted by: Jose Flores | July 9, 2006 03:53 PM

Conspiracy to thwart Mexico's voters to favor right wing Calderon

We have solid evidence of a conspiracy that thwarted the will of the Mexican people in last elections to favor right winger catholic white middle class anti-abortion pro-life anti-next-day-pill PAN Candidate Felipe Calderon.

On July 03, one day after the elections, some PRD party representatives found some suspicious bags in the streets of Cadereyta Nuevo Leon, containing thousands of tamales.

According to John Mesh, (an investigator from the National University of the Federal Republic of Los Ramones Nuevo Leon) there was a conspiracy between the right wing Mexican Party PAN; (Partido Accion Nacional) and his presidential candidate Felipe Calderon, accordingly with the tamale vendors of Cadereyta, they also convinced Tamale vendors from Villa Juarez, a locality near Monterrey, Nuevo Leon, to conceal Ballots marked PAN inside each tamale before the processing.

The report does not state what flavor the tamales they were, but we got a secret document stating the figures and signed by the president of the local PAN office of Cadereyta, Pancho Cajinas:
Namely in this way
Candidates - Parties - Number Tamales % of Ballots
Felipe Calderón - National Action Party 15,000,284 tamales 35.89
Andrés Manuel López Obrador - Alliance for the Good of All (PRD, PT, Convergence) 14,756,350 tamales 35.31

This malicious scheme was designed to have the people eat the tamales early in the Morning of July 2, and once at the polling booth, they would defecate the ballots. In this way casting more than 100 ballots per voter in favor of Calderon!!

Posted by: Jose Flores | July 9, 2006 04:12 PM

People, just take a looke on one important fact about the recount done last thursday, IFE NEVER showed the number of votes it was adding during the online sum. IFE just showed percentages, it was not clear and still is not clear how many votes officialy the PRD and PAN had by district. This is a pitty for an institution that praised itslef to be transparent. This election is creating confusion because the IFE is not playing as clear as it should be. How people can double check the numbers and make an opinion about the legitamacy of both parties involveld in this discussion?? the worst thing is that Vicente Fox has not the leadership neccesary to mantaing things in order, he was completely promoting his rigth ideas during the presidential campanig and sometimes he has been despective with the oposition.

Posted by: jose pacheco | July 9, 2006 06:40 PM

This blog is an alternative source of information:

http://senderodelpeje.blogspot.com/

During last week a good amount of information, pictures and videos from AMLO´s supportes were ulopaded there showing how AMLO´s number of votes were "Mistankenly" reduced in the PREP and how results displayed by the thursday´s count were mathematically imposible. Take the information as it is: a site supporting Lopez Obrador. If you read spanish I strongly recommend you to read it and make your own opinion.

Regards


Posted by: Jhony | July 9, 2006 07:12 PM

It sounds like Mexico still employs paper balloting. Why does Mexico still employ paper balloting if not to recount the vote in a case like this?

Posted by: Jorge from Bloomington | July 9, 2006 11:19 PM

You can download all the PREP data and Java software to graph the data at http://www.croma.com.mx/IFE/

During the "official count" done last wesnesday and thursday, and broacasted live on TV, the percentages for PRD and PAN changed by more than 1% while the percentage for PRI didn't change at all (not even 0.01%) which makes those results hard to believe.

I used the PREP data to calculate the average and standard deviation for those percentages and the PRI had a standard deviation of a little more than 12% which makes it pratically impossible to have the behavior we saw on TV. The standard deviation for PRD and PAN is about 17% so each time their percentages varied by 0.03% the PRI percentage should have varied by about 0.02%, and that didn't happen. To make sure my assumptions were right I also wrote a program that selected the data in a random order, adding the votes and calculating the percentages. I ran that program several times and it always showed the expected behavior: the PRI percentage changed if the other percentages changed. Therefore, one can safely say that the data presented by IFE was false (at least for PRI).

Posted by: Gerardo Horvilleur | July 10, 2006 02:54 AM

Why have NONE of the supporters of AMLO answered the question that many people have asked, that is, on what basis did AMLO claim on election night that he had won the presidency by "500,000 votes"? Why have not AMLO and the PRD provided documentation to support this claim? I think the answer is obvious. AMLO just made it up -- just like he is doing now with his claims of "fraud". I'm still waiting for an answer from David and other AMLO supporters. Please tell us more about the "500,000 vote" victory!

Posted by: gaetano | July 10, 2006 04:57 AM

Another question for AMLO supporters and those who advocate a recount of all 41,000,000+ million ballots. Why is a recount more accurate than the initial count of ballots? Isn't it possible, if not likely, that the recount could be less accurate? There is a good reason that Mexican election law states that ballot containers should not be opened unless there is real evidence of irregularities. It's because there's far more likelihood of chicanery and loss of ballot integrity when ballot containers are unsealed. In fact, the Mexican election court nullified a recent governor election in Mexico for exactly this reason. This is AMLO's real objective -- to nullify a presidential election that he knows he lost. It also explains why AMLO and PRD are not challenging the votes of any of the other senator, deputy and local elections which were counted in the same manner as the presidential election.

Posted by: gaetano | July 10, 2006 05:14 AM

The Mexican Electoral Law specifies certain conditions under which the packages MUST be opened. But, contrary to what the Federal Electoral Institute and PAN have been claiming, it does not forbid the packages to be opened.

Posted by: Gerardo Horvilleur | July 10, 2006 05:29 AM

Gaetano:

One thing at the time. The statement about the 500,000 votes, first. Do you recall Calderon self-proclaimed "victory" on the night of July 2, based on a) the behaviour of the PREP numbers, non-binding, not final and seriously questioned and b) a series of results of probably bogus polls, provided no poll using a reasonable sample size could be accurate to detect the difference of less then 1%? Both candidates were playing politics. No big surprise...

What else? Ah, the recount; there are two possibilities: a) that mistakes were made (very likely; no offense to anybody, but keep in mind that there were more that 130,000 voting stations, not all of them in urban settings, not all of them manned by committees with the same accuracy) or worst, b) that numbers were manipulated, in particular in those voting stations without PRD representation. The recount, I pressume, would happen in the presence of numerous witnesses, of all parties; that is why several of us are proposing that a reccount would legitimize, to the eyes of everybody, ANY CANDIDATE who really won the election.

Posted by: pasilla | July 10, 2006 09:04 AM

Everyone who thinks that the IFE made something wrong, let me inform you that specialists on politics are sure that IFE's system is one of the most transparent and well done of the entire world.
So there's no doubt, Calderon won.

Posted by: MBR | July 10, 2006 10:14 AM

Let's not be fooled: the PRD tried to open all the packages, with two purposes: 1.- Delay the official tally in order to give the people the idea that Lopez was winning. But Lopez numbers started to decrease after 6 hours of counting. They never thought Mexico would stay awake and the media will be giving to us the counting information all the time. 2.- As they did in Tabasco (in the governor election Lopez lost), they tried to open all the packages because this is illegal during the official tally (unless there are present 4 specific irregularities), and they succeded in Tabasco and they got the vote annulled. This is what they want now. IT IS FORBIDDEN TO OPEN ALL THE PACKAGES IN THE OFFICIAL TALLY, Gerardo. And yes, I think this is a lack of respect for all of us. Maybe you forget we the mexicans have been through a long way to have clean elections, and the elections cost to us a lot of money. According to documented cases, the only one who can authorize the opening of ALL the packages is the TRIFE, and they will do it not by the Electoral Law, but making an abstract interpretation of the Mexican Constitution. That's the strategy Lopez will follow, because they are forced by law to prove all the "irregularities" they have been screaming of, but they know they can't support them, and Jesus Ortega had publicly said that's the way they will do it. What Lopez tried to do is to divide the country in poor and rich people, and he forgot all the middle class, the one who pays more taxes, the one who pays all the services (many of his poor people steal electricity all the time), and the one who is really working all the time instead of cry for government aid. These are the ones who voted in majority against him. Come on, we'll wear a white ribbon to tell everyone we want them to respect our vote and our work in the polling stations.

Posted by: claudiae | July 10, 2006 10:25 AM

Contrary to the opinion of the Washington Post, the "populist Lopez Obrador" has been supported in difficult situations such as the "Desafuero" and today by citizens in general, regardless of their social status. Attention should be called to the fact that Mexico City, were the biggest demonstrations have been registered, has the highest education level, including political, and where we enjoy more sources of information. If it were a matter of poverty how could you explain the massive support of a state such as Guanajuato, a prominent source of illegals in the US, to Felipe Calderón, the "the ultra right winger" who is probusiness? I am loyal to legality, as many other people, and not to Lopez Obrador.

Posted by: Rodolfo Quintero | July 10, 2006 12:53 PM

Many people, including the writer of this article, are saying that, suddenly, from saturday to sunday 2nd, frauds dissapeared form Mexico and this country became an electoral copy of Swizerland. Of course there is fraud, there are too much interests in game to allow someone else to reach Mexico's presidency. The electoral fraud is a copy of Florida's fraud because the intellectual authors are the same.

Posted by: c | July 10, 2006 01:52 PM

"claudiae" is repeating what the TV, Ugalde and Calderón said: that opening electoral packages is illegal. The Electoral Law states three cases in which this packages HAVE TO be opened; IT DOES NOT STATE THAT OTHERWISE THE PACKAGE SHOULD NOT BE OPENED. The purpose of the law is to give transparency and legitimate decmocracy, and, thus, does not restrict the freedom to open packages. Anyone that knows a little bit about law, knows that laws are not restrictive, this means, that what is not prohibited is allowed, what makes even clearer the desire of the Ugalde-Calderón-Fox coallition to trick mexicans. In Tabasco, polls were opened, and, since errors were so evident in more of the 20% of them, the election was declared illegal by the federal electoral court, AS THE LAW STATES. Again, twisting the reality, Calderón said that they tried to declare illegal this voting, but the law states that in presidential elections, the election cannot be declared illegal by means of amount of errors in polls. The whole election can only be declared illegal by global arguments IN THE SUPREME COURT.

Posted by: Carlos | July 10, 2006 02:10 PM

MBR: Your partial view of the facts is obvious. Global Exchange, the American group of observers stated that the IFE arrived the election day "weakened and with poor credibility", and made public many of the irregularities before and during that day. Now, evidence of the fraud is flowing everywhere. Please read a little bit more, instead of watching Adela Micha.

Posted by: me | July 10, 2006 02:19 PM

To JOSÉ FLORES

Please post the evidence in http://senderodelpeje.blogspot.com/, it is important.

Posted by: Juan | July 10, 2006 02:28 PM

Gerardo Fernandez Noroña, AMLO's campaign's chief spokesman, said that if the seven-judge Federal Electoral Tribunal (TRIFE) upheld the result without a full recount and allowed Calderon to take office, "we are not going to let him govern."

"The other road is insurrection," Fernandez said. "If the judges decide not [to recount each vote] we all have a problem -- they, we and the country.... What has to be done to avoid this confrontation? Count the votes one by one ... and if we lose, we will respect the result absolutely."


http://www.latimes.com/news/nationworld/world/la-fg-mexvote10jul10,1,3235731.story?coll=la-headlines-world


What more can I say?

Posted by: Eva | July 10, 2006 05:51 PM

Jose Flores made a very good point about the turmoil that must be tearing at the heart of the PRD now. By backing el peje, party leaders know they may harm their chances in future elections, especially if all the demonstrations lead to disruptions in the economy or violence in the streets.

Ebrard must be very uncomfortable up there on the dais with AMLO. Gov Cardenas in Michoacan is probably watching this all closely as well. His daddy, a party founder, was shoved aside in order to give AMLO the nomination. Now the Cardenas family may get their revenge.

The PRD may mature as a party through this somewhat painful process. They should be analyzing their position based on the vote and try to find a way to reach a broader spectrum of society.

Posted by: Goyo | July 10, 2006 06:25 PM

I apologize cause my English is not as good as yours, still, I hope you understand what follows:


This is AMLO (in spanish) giving his word to 3 TV news hosts that he WILL ACCEPT IFE's result, even if he doesn't win...


http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UzD5iw4MxrY

AM = Adela Micha
LP = Lopez Doriga
VT = Victor Trujillo
AMLO = Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador

Dialogue:

//// first clip ///////////

AM: Are you going to respect people's decision on July 2, even if you loose for one vote?

AMLO: Yes

AM: Promise

AMLO: Yes, of course

////// second clip /////////

LD: Would you recognice, WILL you recognice your defeat if you loose?

AMLO: Yes, of course, in a Democracy you win or you loose.

LD: But do you make a commitment about this tonight?

AMLO: I am a democrat, I had always said it.

LD: Do you make a commitment to respect IFE's result?

AMLO. Yes, we will respect IFE's result


/////third clip ///////

VT: Whatever happend on July 2, the result IFE present...Are you going to accept it no matter what?

AMLO: Yes, because in a democracy you win or you loose and we have to respect people's will ( decision )

.....

Of course, he DID NOT accept the result...

So.. Why do we have to believe that even if the votes are counted again, and he doesn't win, he will accept TRIFE's result?

Posted by: Eva | July 10, 2006 07:11 PM

P.S.

Votes had been counted by regular citizens.. Who would count those votes again?

Who can we trust to recount the votes?

I trust more in those citizens who already counted the votes, than in political partys in general.

Posted by: Eva | July 10, 2006 07:27 PM

Muy bien, Eva! Your English translation is excellent and you are right, when pushed by the TV journalists, AMLO said he would accept the result from IFE. The moment it did not go his way, however, he rejected it and insulted all the thousands of ordinary citizens who worked to make the election an exemplary civic process.

Those who have access to Reforma in Mexico can also read Sergio Sarmiento's excellent columns about this. He says AMLO could undermine confidence in the system and harm Mexican democracy with his challenge.

As I have said before-- if he has good evidence of fraud, then he should do something, but if all this turns out to be a big bluff or a loser's tantrum, then he will have done great harm to his country for nothing.

Posted by: Goyo | July 10, 2006 07:43 PM

Here goes Goyo again. Why do you keep repeating that making use of a legitimate right is "an insult to ordinary citizens?"

"I hope, frankly, they the tribunal will check out every complaint and do vote-by-vote counts where it is necessary." Said who? Goyo, two days ago.

On the other hand, what's so special about Sergio Sarmiento that his opinion should be automatically accepted as the truth? In MY OPINION (as good as anybody's, Sarmiento's included) not following through with a challenge to the dubious results, not having a full recount "could undermine confidence in the system and harm Mexican democracy." These are both just opinions. Then what?

Lopez Obrador misspoke. Big deal. We all hoped that IFE was going to behave adequately, but it didn't. For these instances, the law is clear. The court will decide if the PRD allegations have merit and what to do about them. All the rest is the speculation that you seem so fond of.

Eva, how come you distrust political parties, in general, if they are made up of citizens?

Posted by: pasillo | July 10, 2006 08:16 PM

As the day wores on, more evidence is appearing of mischief by the PAN and its cronies on election day. Videos of ballot boxes being stuffed with votes for Calderon in Guanajuato, plus hundreds of AMLO's supporters claiming to have been shoved out from the voters lists. Wonder why the PAN opposses a recount?

Herewith, a good link to a good statistical analysis about the improbable IFE results on the PREP for those with some solid quantitative background:

http://em.fis.unam.mx/public/mochan/elecciones/

Posted by: Marco Beteta | July 10, 2006 08:20 PM

Has anyone noticed that the PAN is alleging that Ebrard spent 6 times the maximum on his race in the DF? ($300 million pesos, the limit was $48 million).

Posted by: Jerry Bourbon | July 10, 2006 09:02 PM

pasilla-- If AMLO claims massive fraud and impunes those who carried out the process he has to be talking about thousands of ordinary citizens who worked at the polls. He is also calling into question Mexico's ability as a nation to carry out a democratic election.

If he has hard evidence, then, as shameful and painful as that would be for Mexico and its people, it would be better to face it. If the matter could be resolved in a vote-by-vote recount, the TRIFE should do it. But-- I don't think that really would settle things because there will always be some human error and, if Lopez Obrador still comes up losing, he will just denouce the TRIFE as being part of the plot.

Look at what happened today. AMLO presents two videos and says they show clear evidence of fraud. Later, the PAN explains what is seen in the videos and it turns out the PRD reps were on hand at the time and knew there was nothing fraudulent going on.

Eva made a good point-- If AMLO was not prepared to accept the IFE result he should not have said he would. But then it was an open secret in Mexico before the election that he would protest any result that was not in his favor.

As for Sergio Sarmiento-- he is one of the clearest thinkers in Mexico. He can explain these matters far better than I can and I urge you all to check out his writings if you can. If you are not in Mexico it may be hard because Reforma now charges for access to its online stories. If you are in Mexico-- it is worth the cost of the newspaper just to read his columns--lunes a viernes.

Posted by: Goyo | July 10, 2006 11:33 PM

There are thousands of electoral fraud proofs, and they will be presented by mexican left wing parties.
By the other hand, here in Mexico people must force the legal institutions by political mass mobilisation. The conservative party does not have enough social bases to do the same. They are backed by the State, in an unrully and illegal association. That is why the institutions don´t enjoy of plenty legitimation, and that´s why impoverish people must demonstrate by political mobilisation.
Finally, we must not take for granted the official opinion about Lopez Obrador as a mass provoker. His actions are based on strong ideas about social justice, governance and development.
Remember that the great majority of mexican intelligentsia (the academy, writers, and artists) has supported his campaign, while Calderon ideas were directed to the estimulation of basic instincts: irrational fear, unfounded attacks, lies, and catholic fanatical feelings.
I guess Bush and conservatives minds in America support Calderon´s national project: to increase the number of poor people in Mexico, to send millions of unemployers to America in search of a job, and to repress those who oppose that policies.
If some Americans really don´t want more and more mexicans in the USA, they must not support Calderon. Think about it.

Posted by: Francisco Guízar Vázquez | July 10, 2006 11:38 PM

Francisco says, about AMLO "Remember that the great majority of mexican intelligentsia (the academy, writers, and artists) has supported his campaign."

He is absolutely correct. I am reminded of a quote that I read once to the extent of "Whenever I see a roomful of intellectuals, I become nostalgic for Pol Pot." I do not know who said that, but I think it sums up the absolute worthlessness of intelectuals. The Mexican intellectual class is by and large little better than cheap prostitutes. For 70 years they, as a class, sold out to the PRI in exchange for tidbits thrown to them from the government. Witness parties like the PPS, supposedly "intellectual" movements, which were, in reality funded and controlled by the PRI.

Supporting AMLO, we have intellectuals, Zapatistas, UNAM philosophy students, the CGH, the Atenco thugs, and other assorted low lifes. Supporting Calderon, we have primarily people who work for a living and create jobs.

Posted by: Jerry Bourbon | July 11, 2006 12:24 AM

So much for the pregnant ballot boxes video:

From El Universal, today.

Arturo Zárate Vite
El Universal
Ciudad de México
Lunes 10 de julio de 2006
22:15 El Instituto Federal Electoral (IFE) aclaró que no hubo embarazo de urnas en Salamanca, Guanajuato, como denunció la coalición Por el Bien de Todos.

Como lo anticipó El UNIVERSAL.com.mx, esta noche del IFE afirmó que no existió esa presunta irregularidad que dio a conocer en un video el candidato Andrés Manuel López Obrador.

"Las imágenes difundidas esta mañana en el citado video, relacionadas con supuestas anomalías, han sido malinterpretadas, pues todos los representantes de los partidos políticos y coaliciones firmaron de conformidad el acta de escrutinio y cómputo, avalando con ello la limpieza de la jornada, por lo cual no hubo ninguna irregularidad detectada", dice el comunicado oficial.

Lo que ocurrió, explica el texto del IFE, es que entre ocho y diez boletas de la elección de diputados, a la hora del escrutinio, se encontraron en la urna de la elección presidencial, por lo que el presidente de la casilla 2227 ordenó que se introdujeran a la urna correspondiente.

El comunicado del IFE está acompañado del acta de cómputo y escrutinio, firmada por representantes de los partidos, entre ellos, el representante de la coalición Por el Bien de Todos.

Posted by: Jerry Bourbon | July 11, 2006 12:27 AM

pasilla,

It appears you are admitting that AMLO just made up his claim of a "500,000 vote" victory. Contrary to AMLO's Big Lie, Mr. Calderon was citing his party's own internal vote numbers and the PREP results when he made his public statement. Also, as Mr. Calderon stated in an interview to the British press, the only reason that he made his victory statement (proven accurate) on the night of July 2 was to counter the false assertion of AMLO. I bring up this subject because it is indicative of AMLO's tactics that he will say or do anything to obtain the presidency. Thus we have the phony claims of fraud and other outrageous statements. It's also informative that AMLO has not agreed to abide by the final decision of the election court. This man is a real threat to Mexican democracy. Calderon's claim that AMLO is a danger to Mexico is a vast understatement.

Posted by: gaetano | July 11, 2006 08:10 AM

How can anybody have a substantive discussion with somebody who claims that: "The Mexican intellectual class is by and large little better than cheap prostitutes" and who calls intellectuals and UNAM philosophy students "low lifes"? Talking about insulting Mexicans... But of course, Jerry Bourbon NEVER calls names. I'm not at all surprised, witnessing as you all, this disdain for culture, by the Mexican presidential couple historic gaffes: recall Jose Luis Borgues and the poetess Rabina Gran Tagore? (translation: Jorge Luis Borges and Rabindranath Tagore).

Gaetano, I'm only saying that I believe (I don't have proof, one way or another) that AMLO own polling is behind his, perhaps mistaken, claim of a 500,000 votes advantage. Why could Calderon use results of his own, also mistaken polls, which claimed differences that were shown wrong, and Lopez Obrador couldn't? AMLO speech after Ugalde's had the purpose, I believe, to quench the precipitous and illegal declaration of victory by PAN. The counter-speech by Calderon made unfortunate references, as I said, and anybody can check, to WRONG (and suspicious) information.

The REAL danger to Mexico is the irrational fears, the wild speculation and, most unfortunately, the bigotry exhibited by some supporters of PAN. It's really sad that you, or anybody for that matter, allows propaganda to hijack his rational thinking.

Posted by: pasilla | July 11, 2006 09:04 AM

Answer to your question Pasillo:

Because "randomly chosen" citizens aren't likely to have an agenda, while citizens "WHO CHOOSE" to get into a political party, may.

Posted by: Eva | July 11, 2006 11:44 AM

Good answer, Eva. The video tape fiasco shows how desperate AMLO is. He shows a tape of a guy stuffing ballots in a box. Now, the first thing one might wonder is why this man would go on doing this without objecting to the camera if he were doing something wrong. The IFE explanation is that he was simply moving some misplaced ballots to the right box, deputy votes that were mistakenly placed in the presidential box. The PRD rep signed off on this and there was NO fraud.

This is a good example of why AMLO is a danger to Mexico-- He takes something that is perfectly normal-- presents it as something fishy and hopes his followers will be impressed by the images and ignore the rational explanations. He is playing with fire, putting his own agenda ahead of the nation.

As for the intellectuals-- Bourbon has it right, although we have to allow for a little cynical humor in his wording. This crowd has always been with the left. They do not think things through or present rational arguments, they just rant on the same old worn-out Marxist ideas that most of the world already rejected. They would never have wanted to live in a communist country, but they seem to favor some sort of socialist system in Mexico. They are also the same people who defend Fidel Castro at every turn. Somehow it does not bother them that anyone aspiring to be an intellectual in Cuba ends up in prison.

Posted by: Goyo | July 11, 2006 12:18 PM

Thanks Goyo.

I agree with you, the video is out of context. The momment I saw it, I wish to see the "full" video, not only the part that fits what they claim.

Unfortunately, damage had been done...

On one hand, PRD followers believe this man is actually commiting fraud and so, they will hardly believe in institutions that cost us a lot of time, money and effort.

On the other hand, PRD looses credibility.

Posted by: Eva | July 11, 2006 02:41 PM

Journalist Lopez Doriga interviewed the man on the video that PRD presented as a proof of fraud. In case you want to hear it, you have to go to:

www.radioformula.com

The link is in the bottom of the page.

Basically, Mr. Castro backs up IFE's statement about this matter.

What does AMLO have to say about this? He said that "some of the PRD representatives on the polling places may have been corruputed".

The problem with AMLO is that he truly seems to believe that almost the entire world is against. His favorite word is 'complo'. Yes, it's misspelled, but I was trying to quote him.

Posted by: Eva | July 11, 2006 05:39 PM

Bourbon: Thank you for your response, but I think your comments are biased and funded in an extemeley ethnocentric, if not fascist view about intelectual sector (maybe I´m wrong, anyway). Remember, Hitler ordered to burn books and to jailed intelectuals (the same did Pol Plot and Stalin).

I also think that sexual workers deserve respect. We should not use them as a pretended pejorative expression.

I know there in America most of the people think and respect alterntive thinking.

I just would like to emphasize that López Obrador is not against American interests, because America is not represented by a monolithic opinion. There are political sectors in America that would welcome López Obrador´s political and economical policies.

The mass media (LATimes, for example) has pretended to show Lopez Obrador as a anti Nafta candidate. To re-negotiate the Trade does not mean to be against it.

Also, most of the people who work and respect the law in Mexico support López Obrador; Most of those who explote working women and men and those who do not respect the taxes law, support Calderon. The middle class is divided. So, things are not white-and-black.

About videos: we should wait for more information. Remember that mass media in Mexico is not impartial.

We have to consider one more fact: there were lots of illegal "PRD representatives" in different "casillas" (pigeonholes or ballot-boxes). These individuals were able to sign in the "actas" (certificates) as oficial PRD members, but many of them were false "perredistas" (PRD´s members).

Posted by: Francisco Guízar | July 11, 2006 05:41 PM

It is really disgusting this affair about the poor professor who was in the video and was only doing what he was suppossed to do, and all party representative agreed to it.
This is too frantic. AMLO is really crazy. I cannot imagine how much pressure his own staff and party fellows are going through. It is just exagerated and we are in for more. I am glad I voted for Calderon. I suppose many who voted for this fellow are very dissapointed.

Posted by: emptyboxes | July 11, 2006 05:51 PM

Eva:

Calderon´s campaign cost at least US$47,000,000.

López Obrador US$27,000,000.

Which one has expended more?

I don´t think the complete count of the ballots would excess the cost of Calderon´s campaign.

But the absence of governace that may lead the negative of counting them all, would cost a lot for both nations: Mexico and USA (check the Finantial Times opinion).

Posted by: Francisco Guízar | July 11, 2006 05:52 PM

I suppossed you got these numbers from the senderodelpendeje or something like that.

Get real. This little fellow obrador lost the election and now he begining to lose any little style he ever had.
Poor amlo showing videos and alleged fraud documentation, where is claudia shaunban and the others, why does he have to do the talking, because he is desperate for media attention and wants to see himself on tv. This is patetic, we should make a little collect and buy a CCTV system so he can see himself all the time on his little TV.

Posted by: Jose Flores | July 11, 2006 07:56 PM

Francisco:

I apologize to any sex workers I might have offended, by lumping them into the same class as intellectuals. Most sex workers have far more human decency and honor (and are generally nicer people) than most intellectuals and certainly should not be grouped with them. They also work harder. I stand corrected.

Can you people on the left disagree with ANYBODY without throwing in the word "fascist" or "nazi"? It seems to me that when the logical arguments run out, the tried and true "fascist" slanders come out. Don't feel bad, the left in the US and Europe does it too....

Since we are discussing fascism, one of its tenets is an utter intolerance of dissent. This sounds a lot like AMLO right now, as he spits out one video after another (as soon as one is discredited, another comes out) and wild accusation after wild accusation. By refusing to answer the question as to whether he will respect a court ruling or recount that goes against him, he HAS answered the question, in the negative. A refusal to accept electoral losses is another hallmark of classical fascism.

Finally, if "the people of Mexico who work and support the law support AMLO" does this include the Atenco thugs? Also, does this mean that, the 27 million Mexicans who most certainly did NOT support AMLO are " those who exploit working women and men and those who do not respect the taxes law"?
27 MILLION exploiters? Poor Mexico.

Posted by: Jerry Bourbon | July 11, 2006 08:29 PM

Gerardo Horvilleur-

Please e-mail me:

dbcrow@hotmail.com

Thanks,
David

Posted by: David Crow.Mexico City | July 11, 2006 10:08 PM

I am getting a bit tired is these images on the newspaper and on TV and the great mayority of people is also getting angry at AMLO, you can probably see that by simply looking at these and other forums where the tide of the opinion who used to favor AMLO is quickly turning the other way around. The discussion now is not about the PAN or the PRI or even the PRD but about what this insane candidate nominated is going to do. How lowly and dishonest his attitude.

Posted by: emptyboxes | July 11, 2006 11:06 PM

IFE have made available on Internet the results of the election in every polling station. You can check it at:

www.ife.org.mx

For those who ignore it, I just want to inform you that, after citizens count the votes and sing all the documents, they also public this information in a big sheet of paper outside the polling station for everyone to see.

Party representatives could compare this information with the 'actas' they have, and now they can compare them too with the information IFE is publicating.

Posted by: Eva | July 12, 2006 10:57 AM

Even people close to Calderon (Aboitiz for instance) are leaving his party, PAN, and protesting against the more than obvious fraud. This is not a matter of ideologies anymore, so be careful with your insults left and right, it's a matter of democracy. Either you are for democracy or for fraud, that's the choice. All the rest is campaign bologni and the campaigns are over. If Mr. Calderon is so sure he won, why is he so afraid to count the votes? Why is he so afraid of using a different software than the one installed by his brother in law to count the votes? El que nada debe, nada teme... and I'm afraid Calderon is more and more fearful every day. He never expected people to remember that he (not his aides) he stole 3 million pesos as head of Banobras (even he has confessed to this)... clean hands? yeah, as clean as a pig's den.

Posted by: Juan Ciudadano | July 16, 2006 04:16 PM

www.juliohernandez.com.mx in this link are the reasons for a recount,at the bottom of the page you´ll find "testimonios graficas e informacion electoral" in there you´ll find dates,pick one and see for yourself why we need recount.

Posted by: Raul Perez Espinoza | July 17, 2006 09:02 PM

I invite you to watch this clip.

It was made during "campaign time", and at the beginning it shows some journalist talking about the "dirty campaings" we all live here in México, but later it shows what -for me- represents AMLO's "Plan B" in case he didn't win the election, and I quote him "A lie that is repeated can become a truth"

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kXF6voj5q9k

I hope someone with a better English could make the translation and placed the dialogue in this page.

Posted by: Eva | July 18, 2006 05:52 PM

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