Mexico: López Obrador rises in polls, will he win the presidency?

The opposition candidate continues to growth in the vote intention, which concerns the government of Enrique Peña Nieto

Mexico: López Obrador rises in polls, will he win the presidency?

Mexico's presidential race is polarized, according to the latest poll presented by the newspaper Reforma, in which opposition candidate Andrés Manuel López Obrador continues to concentrate voting preferences. The numbers show that the three-time presidential candidate remains at the top with 48% of preferences, which has worried the ruling party, the historic Institutional Revolutionary Party (PRI).

Leer en español: México: López Obrador sube como espuma, ¿ganará la presidencia?

Lopez Obrador, candidate of the coalition Juntos haremos historia (Together we will make history), is located 22 points above Ricardo Anaya of the coalition Por México al frente (For Mexico to the front), which concentrates 26% of preferences and 30 points above the official candidate José Antonio Meade of  coalition Todos por México (All for Mexico), which has only 18% of preferences. Far below are the independent candidates Margarita Zavala and Jaime Rodríguez Calderón El Bronco, with 5% and 3% vote intention respectively. El Bronco started his campaign late because he had to go to the Electoral Tribunal to validate his candidacy, which was riddled with irregularities. Finally, Armando Ríos Piter, with hundreds of thousands of false signatures, was left out, but he joined the pro-government candidate to support him.

In the 2006 election, López Obrador was the leader in the polls, an advantage that he began to lose due to his strong and hostile character towards other candidates and the power dome he calls the Mafia of power. Felipe Calderón took advantage of this situation to oust him from the first position, with a fear campaign where he accused López Obrador of wanting to convert Mexico into Venezuela.

In 2012, Enrique Peña Nieto was the favorite in the polls, while López Obrador was second. Peña's setbacks seemed to keep him away from the presidency. The then candidate was involved in different situations. For example, the incident occurred at the International Book Fair of Guadalajara - where he could not name three books that had marked him-; and the event he starred in a private university - where he hid in a bathroom because of the students' protests against him-. This caused that 131 students of this university protested in social networks presenting their credentials and their displeasure against the PRI, creating the movement I am 132. Peña Nieto began to descend in the polls in favor of López Obrador, however, at the end it was not enough.

In this election, López Obrador has measured his behavior and has been open to dialogue, although this has not prevented him from falling into contradictions or at times showing signs of his character that has paid him dearly in the past. Unlike in 2006, López Obrador has not started to fall, but has significantly increased his advantage over the second place. Many analysts in Mexico doubt that debates can have a profound effect on polls; however, this advantage of 22 points is not definitive, even less after his previous experiences.

The issues that can subtract several points in the preferences are undoubtedly the construction of the New International Airport of Mexico City, work that has promised to stop, in addition to the educational reform of the government of Peña Nieto, which he will review and reverse it. His challenge is to maintain the advantage until July 1, which in his case is not easy, it is still necessary to see reflected in the polls the vote against López Obrador, as well as the role of the independents in the fight that could tip the balance. The media war between José Antonio Meade and Ricardo Anaya has benefited López Obrador, although everything could change if the first two reach an agreement, as one of the coordinators of Ricardo Anaya's campaign has evidenced.

 

Latin American Post | Luis Liborio
Translated from “ México: López Obrador sube como espuma, ¿ganará la presidencia?”

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