Drug War

MEXICO NEWS AND ANALYSIS: NOV 12 - DEC 9, 2012

206

1 - PRI CLAIMS PRESIDENCY, AND FIRST VICTIMS
2 - FEDERAL POLICE IN CUSTODY FOR ATTACK ON CIA AGENTS
3 - LABOR REFORM PASSES
4 - CARTEL LEADER ACCUSES CALDERON ADMIN OF CORRUPTION

On December 1, Enrique Peña Nieto claimed Mexico's Presidency for the PRI, after the party was out of power for twelve years. The July election was marred by vote-buying and campaign spending that may have exceeded legal limits by five-fold. The PRI, known for its long history of corruption and institutional violence, also claimed its first victims during the swearing in ceremony when police severely wounded at least two protesters with rubber-covered metal bullets. Police also severely beat one senior citizen who minutes earlier was distributing free books to a line of officers. More than 100 people were arrested, many who were simply walking near the demonstration when police attacked. It appears that much of the property damage, broadcast amply over the mainstream media, was carried out by provocateurs working with police in an effort to discredit the massive demonstration. It was an auspicious start to a six year reign. 

 

The youthful and photogenic Peña Nieto claims to lead a modern PRI, but most Mexicans are not convinced. He won the presidency with 38% of the vote, hardly a mandate in a country where more than half the population lives in poverty. Peña Nieto inherits, and is likely to continue, economic policies that reflect worldwide declines during the neoliberal era, with 3.5% annual growth under former PRI president Ernesto Zedillo, followed by 2.2% growth under Vicente Fox, and 1.9% under Felipe Calderon.

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Mexico News & Analysis: Nov 5-11, 2012

1 - LATINOS, ELECTIONS AND IMMIGRATION REFORM
2 - MARIJUANA LEGALIZATION CALLS "DRUG WAR" INTO QUESTION

1 - LATINOS, ELECTIONS, AND IMMIGRATION REFORM

175 Some Republicans are worried.  Only 27% of Latino voters supported Mitt Romney's presidential candidacy, and that number includes all the wealthy and historically Republican Cuban-Americans in southern Florida and New Jersey. Latinos accounted for 10% of presidential ballots and are the fastest growing segment of the electorate, leaving Republicans scratching their heads over their newly recognized "demographic problem."  Suddenly, the party of "self-deportation," increased border security, and overt racism is trying to "reposition."  Even right wing acolyte Sean Hannity of Fox News has "evolved" on immigration reform - only two days after the stinging national defeat.  Republicans and Democrats alike are rushing to see who can roll out the welcome mat for 12 million undocumented workers living in the shadows, though always with their own political fortunes in mind.

Within hours of the election, the "demographic problem" captured the attention of commentators and party hacks across the spectrum, but the mainstream analysis of this phenomenon is wrong on two accounts. First, the immigrant rights movement didn't suddenly become a force with Romney's election defeat, nor as a result of Obama's political machine.  In 2006, immigrants organized the largest public demonstrations in the history of this country. About 12 million people took to the streets protesting the draconian Sensenbrenner Bill that would have made undocumented status a felony. In 2009, a small but growing group of DREAMers began to come out of the shadows. Risking deportation to countries they hadn't known since they were small children, the DREAMers put a human face on undocumented status. This courageous group of youth deserves front row seats at the negotiating table, if comprehensive immigration reform is truly on the agenda. Their moral authority made this issue a subject of dinner table conversations, and a bunch of "Johnny-come-lately" politicians interested only in their own political hides should not be allowed to hijack it.

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