[Marxism] López Obrador fights back

Walter Lippmann walterlx at earthlink.net
Sat Jul 15 19:45:28 MDT 2006

(While we have every reason to worry about the imminence of World
War III unfolding as Israel threatens a miltary strike against
Syria while it pounds Beirut into the ground, let's not forget the
unstaable situation in Mexico where another election has now been
stolen by the right-wing, just as it was in Florida in 2000. With
this difference: AMLO is putting on a fight, the fight which Gore
did not put on in Florida in 2000. Here is an article from Cuba's
Granma International. Today's print edition featured an entire 
page interview with AMLO taken from Mexico's LA JORNADA newspaper.)

Havana. July 14, 2006

López Obrador fights back 
—Granma International staff writer—

TWO weeks have passed since the overwhelming majority of the 41
million Mexicans entitled to vote decided to go to the polling booths
to elect the new president of Mexico in a contest in which there were
two options: either to vote for the continuance of a neoliberal model
that privileges a minority plus everything in that country that has
represented genuflection before the empire; or, on the basis of a
program for social justice and national dignity, to attempt to
construct a society in which there is space for everyone.

Both ways were known. Both have been tested.

The first, represented by Felipe Calderón, from the government
National Action Party (PAN), is one of lost illusions, the betrayal
of an electorate that six years earlier voted for change after almost
70 years of Institutional Revolutionary Party (PRI) governments that
not only failed to keep their promises of more employment, better
opportunities and a solution to the emigration issue, but – in the
case of the latter – yielded to Washington and virtually applauded
the criminalization of immigrants and the militarization of the
shared border.

Meanwhile, Andrés Manuel López Obrador, governor of the important
Federal District and candidate for the For the Good of All coalition,
comprising the Democratic Revolution Party (PRD), the Workers Party
(PT) and the Convergence entered the ring with the guarantee of
having honestly administered state assets to the benefit of the
majority of the heavily populated capital, where social contrasts are

It was nothing strange then, that in the pre-electoral battle the
forces of the political ultra-right, of the representatives of the
interests of the national oligarchy, the transnationals and the
Republic administration of George W. Bush which has acted behind the
scenes, would come together to tighten the strings against the PRD
candidate in a shameless dirty deal with the powerful media.

>From the outset López Obrador would be the incarnation of "a danger
to Mexico," a Hugo Chávez satellite, responsible for the country
heading for chaos in the case of bearing off the victory; all without
counting the unfruitful maneuvers of the executive itself to deprive
him of his candidacy.

Those antecedents, while known, are worth recalling at a point at
which, according to the Alliance For the Good of All campaign
command, López Obrador himself, important political and social
sectors and the independent press are all saying that the governing
PAN – with the approval of President Vicente Fox – has plotted an
electoral fraud, a "technical coup d’état" which, to the discredit of
Mexican democracy, could be consummated against the PRD candidate
without the accused having being able to demonstrate the contrary.

On Saturday, July 8, addressing more than 200,000 Mexicans in the
capital’s main plaza, and in various press conferences on that issue,
Andrés Manuel López Obrador called for a national march in protest at
what, for the first time since Election Day, he has described as a
fraud. A peaceful march that should happen again this Sunday.

A "vote by vote and polling booth by polling booth" recount was the
demand made by the For the Good of All coalition starting Monday July
3 to the Judicial Power Electoral Court (TEPJ), a body that according
to federal law has the responsibility of resolving the charges of
"irregularities" committed by the Federal Electoral Institute (IFE),
which is charged of having maintained shady or at very least
irresponsible actions before, during and after the elections to the
constant benefit of the government candidate.

National analysts have noted that after the polls closed and when the
count unexpectedly and suspiciously changed direction to favor
Calderón, the IFE left speculations as to the winner in the hands of
the media for more than three hours. It was only then that IFE
President Luis Carlos Ugalde announced the impossibility of giving
the result given a possible technical tie and immediately President
Fox himself spoke to the nation along the same lines. To that moment
the CNN, Televisa and Mexican television – to quote a few examples –
had quashed the idea that the PAN was irreversibly ahead.

A La Jornada editorial considers "that all the doubts and
irregularities exposed in the last few days when the trend in favor
of López Obrador was surprisingly reversed by less than one
percentage point in favor of Felipe Calderón, should be dispatched
before the process ends with a formal announcement of a winner. In
any other way," it adds, "a government will be constituted on the
basis of enormous discredit and a national split."

In the midst of so much confusion and a seeming treachery on the part
of the PAN, and without the TEPJ having declared him the winner,
Felipe Calderón has proposed a co-government to his adversary. It has
not passed unnoticed that if to date López Obrador was "a danger" for
Mexico, how can it be that he is now being invited to participate in
the cabinet of the new six-year term.

In relation to that, it is likewise notable that the United States,
Spain and Canada have congratulated the supposed winner, government
candidate Felipe Calderón and the European Union is taking of
"impeccable" elections in which "democracy" won.

Meanwhile, the exposés of fraud are more than a few and López Obrador
has enumerated them in recent public addresses:

--The existence of a state operation to favor Felipe Calderón.

--The existence of an order not to open electoral packets and an
abnormal hurry to resolve a numerically hard-fought election in less
than 24 hours.

--Irregularities at 55,000 polling booths.

--The disappearance of more than three million votes, two million of
which the electoral authorities admitted were discounted as
"illegible" after the accusation. Of these votes 600,000 inexplicably
"disappeared" in the states in which the PRD candidate won.

The TEPJ, the only instance that can do so, has until August 31 to
resolve the appeal of López Obrador and his lawyers and until
September 6 to definitively announce the new Mexican president.

Until then the country will be in suspense. The dangers could be
varied taking into account that the right and the forces supporting
the PAN have a lot to lose. Provocations could tempt more than a few.

However, beyond the 0.58% difference that separates Felipe Calderón
from Andrés Manuel López Obrador in the count of the July 2
elections, it is a fact that the Mexican left, represented by the For
the Good of All coalition, has irreversibly become one of the
country’s most powerful political forces, displacing the PRI and,
even though they were robbed of a win in the case of the 1998
elections, it will be impossible to detain the will of an
overwhelming majority of the electorate that is convinced that
another Mexico is possible.

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