The Mexican Senate. Photo: Google

By KELIN DILLON

While Mexican President Andrés Manuel López Obrador’s (AMLO) controversial ‘plan b’ electoral reform may have only passed through the Chamber of Deputies due to added provisions requested by the National Regeneration Movement’s (Morena) allies the Green Party (PVEM) and the Labor Party (PT), the reform’s senatorial debate during the Mexican Senate’s Monday, Dec. 12, session saw some of these very additions nixed from the legislation – all while aspects that contentiously reduce the power of the autonomous National Electoral Institute (INE) remained intact.

Throughout the Senate’s Monday committee sessions, the legislative body removed modifications that were set to guarantee funds and votes for Mexico’s minority parties such as the PT and PVEM, changes that were subsequently approved by the Senate’s Governance and Legislative Studies commissions. 

The modified reform will now move to the Senate’s plenary session to be voted on, where it is expected to pass with ease due to Morena and its allies’ simple majority of 75 senators, in contrast to its opposition’s 52.

Meanwhile, opposition parties such as the conservative National Action Party (PAN), centrist Institutional Revolutionary Party (PRI) and the Democratic Party of the Revolution (PRD) urged citizens to mobilize against the reform – as they did en masse against AMLO’s now-defunct electoral reform to the Mexican Constitution – and demanded for Morena’s Senate Coordinator Ricardo Monreal to postpone the vote on the matter until February, when the Senate begins its next period of ordinary sessions.

“We ask for Mexican society to put pressure on Morena,” said Citizen’s Movement (MC) leader Clemente Castañeda. “Otherwise, the consequences could be catastrophic.”

However, if the reform manages to pass the Senate as anticipated, it will then be returned to the Chamber of Deputies for its ultimate ratification – a course of action Morena seems intent on completing before the year’s ordinary sessions conclude at midnight on Thursday, Dec. 22.

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