At the moment I am making my way, or in the queue to vote in an Acura dealership, for booths are set to open right about now in Mexico City for the largest most consequential election in the history of my country.
If you’re part of the 97.1% of oppo population that lives in North America, this election is critical for how NAFTA negotiations will turn out and for the future of diplomatic relations between Canada, Mexico and the United States.
Mexico is the 3rd largest trading partner with the US, and we share one of the most economically active border region of the world, and six of our cities form three very large metropolitan areas that act as centers for trade. Yet little is known about this election or what you might see on the newspaper when you pick it up on Monday.
A recap of the candidates:
Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador(Morena,Worker’s Party, Social Encounter Party):
Former President of PRD and Morena
Former Mexico City mayor
Polling at 37%
Ricardo Anaya Cortes(PAN,PRD, Citizens Movement):
Former President of PAN
Former congressman and leader of the House of Representatives
Polling at 25%
Jose Antonio Meade(PRI, Green Party):
Former cabinet member for Calderon and Peña Nieto
Polling at 20%
Firstly, the Federal Electoral Processes of 2017-2018 were all organized solely by the National Electoral Institute, INE. We will all be given at the polls the paper ballots for Federal, State, and Local government positions we shall be voting for, a special pencil, and also our thumbs will be painted with electoral ink to prevent fraud. In the 150,000 booths themselves party observers will oversee the process, as will 1.4 million Mexican citizens that were trained by INE to be the people in charge of the voting booths. All of our voting IDs will be checked individually with a huge booklet that has the nominal list of voters of each of the electoral districts.
This all should sound very tedious, well.. that’s because it is. It’s also the reason that for at least two days the nation will be uncertain about who would’ve won the elections: enter PREP.
PREP is a computer tabulating system that reveals the preliminary tendencies of the citizenry as observed by the trained individuals at the polling booths. PREP results are expected to be finished by midnight and will give a suggestion of how the election is going and who is winning what.
However, PREP isn’t without issues, for instance Mexico uses four different time zones, which might effect how the votes are recalled by PREP, something that happened in 2006; when PREP declared Obrador the leader of the tendency but he eventually lost due to the votes cast in the north of the country. Another issue of PREP is that it doesn’t count votes as much as it counts tendencies as observed by the individuals at the booth.
Here’s a map of the election 12 years ago, where PRI had a similarly inconsequential candidate as in these elections. As you can tell, the states won by PAN (blue) are in part outside of the CST and are either in PST or MST, these northern states carry a lot of weight in the election, as around 8% of the country lives across those five states outside of CST. This is why PREP was used to undermine the final vote count in 2006; when Obrador lost by a very slim margin to the PAN candidate, Felipe Calderon. PREP gave Obrador an early lead that began diminishing as time passed.
Those elections might’ve been fraudulent if your candidate lost, if your candidate did not lose, you’d support the EU report that said the election was fairly won by Calderon, but also suggested a lot of changes, like going to second round voting or automatically triggered recounts... neither of which have been legislated.
Even with the blessings of many South American Presidents and Spain’s Prime Minister, Obrador and his supporters will not know the electoral results until late Tuesday or early Wednesday. While everyone will be kept waiting for the results for local, state, and federal legislative races until about Thursday. Since INE doesn’t know how many people will come out to vote, they can’t tell how much time they’ll take to count each ballot by hand or if a recount might be requested by any of the candidates. Even if prior data suggest voter turnout of between 60-65%, polls made showed that upwards of 80% of registered voters intended on going to the polls. However, it’s nothing to get excited about as early polls in the US prior to the 2016 election also suggested higher voter turnout than in reality.
This election is quite special because it will be the largest election of Mexican History, and it will be the first and porbably only time in which I will be able to write “Richie Rich Fucktard” or “Pejelagarto” or “El bronco” in the ballot and have it actually count!
Also, Candidates we barred from any campaign activity last Thursday keep in mind Anaya just broke electoral law right threr, these are their final tweets:
Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador:
Jose Antonio Meade:
Have some more maps!