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Elections in Mexico: the countdown begins before the first trends

The first polling stations have closed; in southeastern Mexico where 98.3 million registered voters are preparing to vote. Read on Sunday, barring any drama, the first female president in the history of a gang-ridden country. by drug trafficking and where ù the UN counts around ten femicides per day.

In this country of nearly two million km2 straddling three time zones, the first offices closed at 6:00 p.m. local time (11:00 p.m. GMT) in the Cancun region and in some US border towns , in the northeast.

Who will be the next president of Mexico, between the candidate of the left in power Claudia Sheinbaum and that of the opposition Xochitl Galvez?

The first surveys at the exit ballot boxes for the presidential election will only be known after the closing of all offices in the center of the country, at 00:00 GMT, then on the Pacific coast, an hour later.

In three months of campaigning, the former mayor of Mexico City Claudia Sheinbaum, candidate of the Movement for National Regeneration (Morena), regularly outpaced her center-right rival, Xochitl Galvez, by an average of 17 points, supported by a coalition of three parties.

A historic day. I feel very happy,” Ms. Sheinbaum told the press after voting in southern Mexico.

Buoyed by the popularity of outgoing President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador, she confided that she had not voted for herself in the presidential election, but for a pioneer of the Mexican left, Ifigenia Martinez, 93, in tribute to her struggle. “Long live democracy!” concluded Ms. Sheinbaum.

In Mexico, ballot papers provide an empty box allowing voting for unregistered candidates.< /p>

“Go out without fear” to vote, launched the opposition candidate, the former center-right senator Xochitl Galvez, while waiting for a long time under a hot sun. lead to vote.

Elections in Mexico: the countdown begins before the first trends

Opposition candidate in Mexico's presidential election, center-right ex-senator Xochitl Galvez, smiles as she waits to vote under the sun at a polling station in Mexico City on June 2, 2024 © AFP – Pedro Pardo

Two people were killed in two attacks on polling stations on Sunday in the central state of Puebla, a local government security source said.

A candidate for local elections had already been killed in the same state on Friday. Another candidate for a minor mandate was killed in the night a few hours before the opening of polling stations in the west, according to the prosecution.

Au at least 25 candidates were assassinated during the campaign, according to the AFP count taken on Saturday.

Elections in Mexico: the countdown begins before the first trends

Claudia Sheinbaum, candidate and favorite for the Mexican presidential election, on June 2, 2024 in Mexico City © AFP – CARL DE SOUZA

“We already know that in some parts of Chiapas, the polling stations will not be set up, I am very sorry about that. These elections have been the most violent in the history of our country, but they also represent a great opportunity to keep democracy alive and I think there is a great turnout,” added Ms. Galvez.

– “Women's time” –

The third candidate, Jorge Alvarez Maynez, 38, took his young son into the voting booth for a first lesson in civics. “Our democracy is imperfect (…) but we have moved forward as a country,” said the representative of the Citizens' Movement (MC) after voting.

From Cancun (south-east) to Mexico City, lines began to form as soon as polling stations opened at 8:00 a.m. local time (2:00 p.m. GMT in Mexico City).

“I think it's going to be historic in terms of participation,” says Ana Hernandez, 28, a political scientist, in front of a polling station in the capital.

The elections seem having mobilized the electorate in this country which has been experiencing “polarization” for six years between the supporters of the outgoing president and his adversaries.

“I am going to vote for Morena, because “They gave a lot of help to the elderly, to the children,” says Reina Balbuena, 50, who sells “tamales”, a typical Mexican dish (a sort of papillote filled with meat and corn).

Elections in Mexico: the countdown begins before the first trends

Xochitl Galvez, opposition presidential candidate during her last campaign meeting, May 29, 2024 in Monterrey © AFP – Julio Cesar AGUILAR

“I receive a scholarship for my granddaughter, I raise her, the mother I don't know where she is, she left it to me. For that they pay me 800 pesos (47 dollars ) and it helped me with her uniforms”, she adds, convinced that “a woman president will help women more”.

“Everything is bad today, security, work, school, pensions, services”, complains on the contrary Alma Mateos, in her forties, who is going to vote for the PAN, a right-wing party, one of the three which supports Ms. Galvez.

“Yes I prefer the old politics. I disagree with the scholarships for young people. We give them 3,000 pesos and they spend it to buy beer, they stop 'study”, this woman who works in sales believes she knows.

Voters are also called to renew the Congress and the Senate, to choose governors in nine of the 32 States and to appoint local deputies and mayors. In total, 20,000 positions are to be filled during these one-round elections.

All rights of reproduction and representation reserved. © (2024) Agence France-Presse

Teilor Stone

By Teilor Stone

Teilor Stone has been a reporter on the news desk since 2013. Before that she wrote about young adolescence and family dynamics for Styles and was the legal affairs correspondent for the Metro desk. Before joining Thesaxon , Teilor Stone worked as a staff writer at the Village Voice and a freelancer for Newsday, The Wall Street Journal, GQ and Mirabella. To get in touch, contact me through my teilor@nizhtimes.com 1-800-268-7116