Institutional Revolutionary Party (PRI) President Alejandro Moreno Cárdenas. Photo: Google

By KELIN DILLON

On Wednesday, Aug. 10, deputies from Mexico’s National Regeneration Movement (Morena) party, Green Party (PVEM) and Labor Party (PT) convened to remove Institutional Revolutionary Party (PRI) President Alejandro Moreno Cárdenas as the president of the Senate’s multiparty Government Commission of the Interior, a move expected to be ratified in a plenary session of the Chamber of Deputies once sessions resume in September.

The Government Commission of the Interior is responsible for “analyzing and ruling on the bills or decrees that take turns in matters of democratic governance; planning policies, transparency and access to information, migration, national security, justice and public security, electoral matters, civil protection; regulation of printed publications; radio, television and cinematography; religious affairs, regulation of games, bets, lotteries and raffles,” as well as “analyzing and ruling on the requests for authorization referred to in Article 37 of the Political Constitution of the United Mexican States, specifically to render services to a foreign government or to accept and use the decorations that granted to Mexican citizens.”

Wednesday’s session was convened by the secretaries of the Board of Directors – while leaving out Moreno – and guarded by personnel from the National Guard, who asked each attendee to present identification before admitting entrance, a move not generally practiced in committee sessions.

Neither Moreno, nor his allies from the Va por México coalition – the National Action Party (PAN), the Party of the Democratic Revolution (PRD), and the Citizens’ Movement (MC) – attended the session. Instead, the session was filled with 21 members from Morena, the PVEM and the PT.

Opposition members pointed toward Moreno’s recently leaked audios, which purportedly reveal illegal financial contributions from the owner of Mexican movie theater giant Cinépolis to the PRI president’s political campaign, as well as allegations of paying off journalists, as reasons for his justified dismissal.

“Alejandro Moreno’s behavior is not an ideal or worthy profile for the presidency of the commission,” said Morena Deputy Mario Llergo at the time.

Llergo also pointed to another leaked audio of Moreno, in which he was allegedly heard saying that “journalists should not be shot to death, they should be starved to death.”

“This makes the permanence of Deputy Alejandro Moreno Cárdenas at the head of the commission untenable,” said Llergo.

While members of Morena, the PVEM and PT were not unanimous on the decision to remove Moreno at first, the arrival of Morena’s coordinator outside of the meeting soon prompted the group to relieve Moreno of his position on a united front.

“On behalf of the faction, we have decided to accompany the proposal of comrade Gerardo Fernández Noroña and that the removal of the president, Deputy Alejandro Moreno, be submitted to a vote of the members of the commission, without this opposing the two exciting ones that have already been approved, addressed to the Political Coordination Board (Jucopo) and the Ethics Committee,” said Llergo, further detailing that the matter would be addressed by the Jucopo come September.

For Moreno’s part, the PRI president claims the opposition’s session and subsequent ruling were illegal and, thus, void.

“Morena’s call is invalid, not only due to the lack of formal communication to the commission about the integration of new secretaries, but also, as of July 19, 2022, Deputy Itzel Alelí Domínguez Zopiyactle and Deputy José Gerardo Rodolfo Fernández Noroña caused automatic dismissal from the commission, by accumulating four faults during the current semester,” said Moreno, noting that the deputies’ dismissal was properly notified to the Political Coordination Board and that the eight legislators who promoted themselves as secretaries of the commission violated the rules and principles of legislative work.

“They deteriorate legality and complicate the discussion of issues that, today, have not been dealt with due to the absence, without justification, of various members of the Governance and Population Commission,” concluded Moreno, asking President of the Political Coordination Board Rubén Moreira to urge fellow legislators to refrain from acting in such a manner and noted his pre-scheduled commission meeting slated for Tuesday, Aug. 16, as approved by the Board of Directors.

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