¡¡¡¡LyrArc Article Gist
¡¡¡¡Dudley Althaus looks at Mexico's 2018 election from a working class suburb of Mexico City called Valle de Chalco. Once a squatter settlement outside Mexico City this area was courted by the ruling PRI Institutional Revolutionary party for 3 decades with a social investing program building sewers, water and power lines. Today this area like others in the state of Mexico have turned to a new party Morena led by Manuel Lopez Obrador, to find a way out of the corruption, violence and failure of the rule of law under the PRI. Obrador left the socialist PRD party to form Morena in 2014 after running for president on the PRD ticket twice. The thirst for change is widespread inside Mexico giving Obrador a higher vote margin in state of Mexico than the 53% he won overall in Mexico. The PRI won just 16% of the vote. The old politics of piggy bank and patronage of the PRI is now discredited in Mexico.
¡¡¡¡The reason the old politics does not work anymore is the change in places like this from a shanty town of tin shacks to a bustling city of 400,000. This place has a technical school, a state university branch, rows of well kept cinder block homes along with malls and wealthier homes. With basic necessities being met Mexican workers are turning to larger issues of national identity and how the next chapter can be written in the social contract. Obrador's nationalist message and criticism of the globalized economy struck workers and middle class as the right direction for Mexico. This came just as president Trump brought new views on immigration and NAFTA on the other side of the border challenging Mexico to find its own direction and independent position in the world economy, even building new links to other countries in Europe and Asia.)