On June 6, Mexico’s citizens will vote in midterm elections to select the Chamber of Deputies of the Mexican Congress and 15 of the country’s 32 governorships. At stake is whether Mexican President Andrés Manuel López Obrador and his party – the National Regeneration Movement (MORENA) – and its satellite parties will retain absolute majority in the Chamber, in addition to their relative majority in the Senate. Dominating the legislature has facilitated President López Obrador’s efforts to redistribute wealth to the poor, foster inward-looking economic nationalism, and centralize power in the presidency. Critics worry that a weak and divided political opposition will be unable to mount an effective challenge against MORENA in the midterms, potentially further weakening checks and balances. President López Obrador has threatened institutions such as the Transparency Institute and National Electoral Institute; attacked media and universities and threatened popular access to public information; and increased control over the country’s courts. Meanwhile, the Mexican economy is facing critical challenges, criminal violence continues, and the government’s response to the COVID-19 outbreak has been meek.
On May 25, Foreign Policy at Brookings convened a panel to discuss key issues in the elections, U.S.-Mexico relations, and prospects for the remaining three years of President López Obrador’s presidency. After their remarks, panelists took questions from the audience.
Viewers submitted questions via email to firstname.lastname@example.org or Twitter using #MexicoElections.
ModeratorVanda Felbab-Brown Director - Initiative on Nonstate Armed Actors, Co-Director - Africa Security Initiative, Senior Fellow - Foreign Policy, Strobe Talbott Center for Security, Strategy, and Technology
PanelistArturo Sarukhan Nonresident Senior Fellow - Foreign Policy, Strobe Talbott Center for Security, Strategy, and Technology, Latin America Initiative, Former Ambassador of Mexico to the United StatesPamela K. Starr Fellow at the Center on Public Diplomacy and Professor - University of Southern California