Thursday, July 06, 2006

Mexican Election Prt. 3

It was very close, but after a recount and six days after the official election, Felipe Calderon has been declared the winner in the Mexican presidential election. Leftist candidate Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador, who lost the Mexican presidential race by about 235,000 votes, vowed Thursday to fight on. He urged his supporters to protest the official result in Mexico City on Saturday. Lopez Obrador also says he will appeal to the Federal Electoral Tribunal, which announced Felipe Calderon the winner after a recount of ballot tally sheets.

There has been reports of voter fraud and considering the terrible history of Mexican elections there is more fact to this allegation than fiction. With this understanding, appealing to the Federal Electoral Tribunal is not a bad decision and Mr. Lopez Obrador should not be considered a sore loser for requesting it. The people, citizens, of Mexico deserve this.

However, if the FET decides not to grant the appeal or instead chooses to manually recount the votes, which would be a lengthy process, and still declare Mr. Calderon the president, Mr. Lopez Obrador should drop further disputes.

The simple fact is this: no matter who the winner is or was, the percentage of victory forces cooperation between the parties, which means that Mr. Calderon and Mr. Lopez Obrador will be seeing a lot more of each other. The one thing that is not for certain is the involvement of the United States. The U.S. has a tendency to become involved in Latin American politics, especially Mexican politics. Though the Bush Administration might publicly hope, privately pray for a Calderon win, this dispute can and should not be influenced by the U.S. in anyway.

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