By RICARDO CASTILLO
Cleavage at Conago
Ten Mexican governors met Monday, Sept. 7, in the northern city of Chihuahua.
The purpose of their gathering was to vote on whether to continue to participate in the National Governors Commission (Conago), an organization that aims to be one voice before the president.
The outcome of the meeting was that all10 voted to splinter from Conago, currently led by San Luis Potosí Governor Juan Manuel Carreras.
The 10 governors formed what they called the “Federalist Alliance,” after all of them bitterly complained that Conago “is no longer a useful space for the exchange of ideas or to get close to federal officials.”
The governors blamed Mexican President Andrés Manuel López Obrador (AMLO) for “provoking the cleavage” within the group.
They claimed that AMLO is governing through “an entelechy,” an ideal that only exists in his mind.
The split comes at a politically sensitive moment for Mexico since the Treasury Secretariat is about to present the 2021 Federal Budget, in which all the Alliance governors feel they have been shortchanged and ill-treated by the federal government, which under AMLO definitely prefers to pump more funds into the poorer states of the Mexican south and southeast.
The 10 governors, by political party and state are: gathering organizer Javier Corral from Chihuahua of the National Action Party (PAN); Rosé Rosas Aispuro from Durango of the PAN; Enrique Alfaro from Jalisco of the Citizens’ Movement Party (MC); Silvano Aureoles from Michoacán of the Democratic Revolutionary Party (PRD); Javier García Cabeza de Vaca from Tamaulipas of the PAN; José Ignacio Peralta Sánchez from Colima of the PAN; Miguel Riquelme Solís from Coahuila of the Institutional Revolutionary Party (PRI); independent Jaime Rodríguez from Nuevo León; and Diego Sinhué Rodríguez Vallejo from Guanajuato of the PAN.
Two of the above are already open hopefuls for their party’s 2024 presidential elections candidacy, Corral of Chihuahua and Alfaro of Jalisco.
The other eight have also their own agenda, but joined this cadre of unlikely political bedfellows under the adage that “AMLO is a threat to democracy.”
How will a now-divided set of 32 governors communicate with the president?
The divide does not dissolve Conago, which still wields the unity of 22 state governors.
The Conago president, PRI San Luis Potosí Governor Carreras, did not seem surprised at the splinter by the Federal Alliance governors.
“It’s not the first time this has happened,” he said.
“Conago was not born with an integration of all the states. They each incorporated slowly at fundamental moments of their respective individual relationships with the federal government. Now, what we have left is to continue building up a dialogue with the federal government in favor of the nation’s public affairs. What’s important is to have an agenda, and be able to develop it.”
On Tuesday, Sept. 8, AMLO said the governors’ splinter “is legitimate,” but made it clear that at no time “am I a threat to democracy. They are free to do whatever they want.”
Landau’s Labor Day Message
U.S. Ambassador to Mexico Christopher Landau focused his Labor Day recognition on the millions of Mexican workers now laboring in the United States, who at the same time help and push the Mexican economy through remittances.
“There is dignity in all work, and I would like to show gratitude to the great contribution of all Mexican workers laboring in my nation,” Landau said.
He also stretch his salute to all of the embassy employees, “the majority of whom are Mexicans,” from Tijuana to Mérida.
“We’ve got a great team,” the ambassador wrote Monday, Sept. 7, in Spanish in a printed message.
Human Rights Offices Taken
After a group of women invaded and took the offices of the National Human Rights Commission (CNDH) in downtown Mexico City, AMLO warned the invaders – who committed acts of vandalism by smearing ink on several paintings hanging from the walls – that they have taken the wrong course of action.
“If they are going to take and burn down an office, are they thinking we’re going to fall for the provocation and we are going to dislodge them? No,” he said.
“They come and they stay days in and days out, without being harassed, because we do not do that. When we were in the opposition, we never acted that way and we confronted very harsh measures. It’s not the way, it’s not the road, and they have to opt out for a nonviolent course.”
Among the images defaced by the protesting women was a painting of Francisco I. Madero, a revolutionist who served as Mexico’s 33rd president, an act the president specifically condemned.
Electoral Fray at Morena
Mexican Federal Deputy Mario Delgado registered his candidacy at the National Electoral Institute (INE) on Monday, Sept. 7, for a bid for the presidency of the majority party National Regeneration Movement (Morena.)
Delgado joins nine other militants in bids to lead the party, founded in 2014 by AMLO.
Also joining the fray was veteran party ideologue Porfirio Muñoz Ledo, who is currently on his last year as deputy.
Besides these two prominent Morena militants, there are seven others already registered with the INE to participate in in the open vote poll to be carried out and supervised by the INE from Sept. 25 to Oct. 2.
Former Petróleos Mexicanos (Pemex) Director Emilio Lozoya’s lawyers filed suit against the ongoing investigation the Special Fiscal for Electoral Crimes is carrying out against him for the alleged illegal funding he made through bribes during the 2015 midterm elections.
The fiscal is investigating “contributions” made by the Brazilian construction company Odebrecht to electoral procedures in different states, particularly Veracruz.
A federal judge turned down the suit and Lozoya will not get the requested habeas corpus protection (amparo).
Lozoya, a protected witness on other cases, will now continue under investigation by the Electoral Fiscals.
…Sept. 9, 2020