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What to expect from Claudia Sheinbaum's government in Mexico?

Photo: Adil Boukind Le Devoir Candidate Claudia Sheinbaum after voting in Mexico

Marc-Antoine Franco Rey

Published at 0:00

  • Americas

Mexico elected a woman as head of government for the first time on Sunday. At the end of this historic election where the two favorite candidates were held by women, what can we expect from the new presidenta of the largest Spanish-speaking country in the world ? An expert looks ahead to Claudia Sheinbaum's future six-year term.

What does Claudia Sheinbaum intend to bring as new head of government and successor to the outgoing president, Andrés Manuel López Obrador ?

< p>Sheinbaum follows the exact line of his predecessor in the Movement for National Regeneration (Morena). “She even said that she was not going to change an inch or deviate even a little bit from the guidelines that the Morena party has put in place,” reports Marie-Christine Doran, full professor at the School of Political Studies at the University of Ottawa and director of the Violence, Criminalization and Democracy Observatory.

Morena, which claims to be the party of the poor , during the previous mandate, increased the minimum wage by 120%, which had not been increased in more than thirty years. It also doubled purchasing power and lifted five million people out of poverty. A guarantee, according to Ms. Doran, of the “great success of the government on the social level”.

If Morena presents itself as a left-wing populist party, it is nevertheless conservative on the macroeconomic plan and it has pursued neoliberal policies over the last six years.

Major upheavals are therefore not to be expected, judge Marie-Christine Doran, except on one point: climate change.

Like other Latin American countries, Mexico is currently struggling with severe droughts and difficulties accessing water. While López Obrador had no speech on environmental issues, Sheinbaum “brought the idea of ​​making the right to water a human right”.

L The former mayor of Mexico City has assured that she wants to guarantee greater collective participation in the management of blue gold. “It’s really the only thing we could say that distinguishes Sheinbaum from López Obrador,” emphasizes Marie-Christine Doran.

Que can we expect in the defense of women's rights in Mexico, with a woman at the head of the country ?

Although she is a woman, Claudia Sheinbaum is no different from her predecessor in her approach to defending women's rights.

“Both have discredited women's movements, feminist movements, by treating them as violent, dangerous people, who always want more,” reports Ms. Doran.

While it is estimated that one in ten women is killed daily in Mexico, Claudia Sheinbaum would be wrong to continue to criminalize or stigmatize the feminist movement, believes Marie-Christine Doran.

“[Her election] is a very big step forward in terms of the political representation of women, […] but it is not a guarantee that issues related to women's rights will still be put forward” , said the professor.

“To see a woman at the head of the country, it could perhaps change certain mentalities, which are still very far from what they should be,” she continues.

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How does the president plan to tackle drug cartel violence ?

The problem at the heart of the fight against drug trafficking is linked to impunity, according to Ms. Doran, which she explains by collusion between peace officers or the military and drug traffickers.

However, Morena wanted to give more power to the authorities so that they would not have to answer to anyone.

“If we put all kinds of obstacles in their way, such as responding to lawsuits for human rights violations, we will delay their work and prevent them from doing it properly,” says Doran about the argument behind this reform.

Deemed unconstitutional by the Supreme Court, this reform, called fuero militar, is expected to be proposed again by Morena. “A major problem,” according to Ms. Doran, observed in other Latin American countries, including El Salvador.

What impact could this election have on relations between Canada and Mexico??

All countries were encouraged at the beginning of López Obrador's mandate, recalls Marie-Christine Doran. Parity in political representation had notably been recognized in 2019 in Mexico.

Nevertheless, the professor notes “a 180 degree turn” in terms of the rule of law and violation of human rights compared to what was initially announced. The opioids at the origin of the crisis affecting the United States, Canada and even Quebec are also produced in Mexico, she mentions.

“I think there will be no major change for the moment in Canada's relationship with Mexico,” she says. But certainly, there could be questions that arise if rule of law issues start to circulate and violence [increases]. »

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