The electoral reform may have the same fate as the failed electricity reform

President Andrés Manuel López Obrador sent yesterday to the Chamber of Deputies his initiative for constitutional reform in electoral matters.

The initiative seeks to reform 18 articles of the Constitution and create seven transitory articles. For Congress to approve it without changing a comma, as AMLO would like, two thirds of the deputies and senators should vote in its favor.

But Morena and her allies do not have a qualified majority in Congress. In the Chamber of Deputies they lack 58 legislators and in the Senate 11 to reach 66% of the votes required to reform the Constitution.

That is why the opposition deputies will not only try to change commas to the initiative, but points, accents, words, phrases, sentences and paragraphs.

And if the lopezobradoristas refuse to negotiate seriously, this reform will have the same fate as the failed electricity reform.

In a document distributed yesterday, the 12 most important objectives that the proposal seeks to achieve are highlighted: “1. Creation of the National Institute for Elections and Consultations (INEC); 2. Election of Councilors and Electoral Magistrates by popular vote (…) nominated by the Powers of the Union; 3. Disappearance of the Local Electoral Public Organisms (OPLEs) and Local Electoral Courts and federalization of the elections; 4. Elimination of plurinominal deputations and reduction of the number of federal and local legislators, passing the Chamber of Deputies to 300 deputies and the Chamber of Senators to 96 Senatorships; 5. Change of the model for the election of deputies, senators and city councils so that they are elected through the pure representation system, where the percentage of votes that a political party obtains will be the percentage of legislators or members of city councils that it will have; 6. Reduction of the members of the City Councils (…) establishing a limit of up to 9 councilors in proportion to the population of each municipality; 7. Elimination of ordinary public financing of national and local political parties and conservation of public financing for electoral campaigns; 8. Recognition of the possibility of implementing electronic voting; 9. Reduction of the times on Radio and Television in electoral matters, eliminating fiscal times; 10. Reduction to 33% of citizen participation so that the Revocation of Mandate is binding; 11. Modification of the constitutional exceptions to broadcast government propaganda, expanding the exceptions so that government propaganda can be broadcast that is considered to be related to public services and those of an informative nature in relation to electoral processes; 12. Creation of the Single Legislation on Electoral Matters, bringing together all the regulations on electoral matters in a single normative instrument”.

The initiative contains very interesting aspects and others that are not so interesting. Hopefully the political forces represented in the Chamber of Deputies can discuss them intelligently in order to improve our electoral and political system, which is quite lacking.

I will comment on these aspects next week.

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Eduardo Ruiz-Healy

Journalist and producer

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Opinionist, columnist, lecturer, media trainer, 35 years of experience in the media, micro-entrepreneur.

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