Despite Court Order, Senator’s Right to Reply Denied at AMLO’s Press Conference

Senator Xóchitl Gálvez outside of Mexico City’s National Palace on Monday, June 12. Photo: Google


After months of ongoing tension between Mexican President Andrés Manuel López Obrador (AMLO) and Senator Xóchitl Gálvez, including a barrage of verbal attacks by López Obrador against the National Action Party (PAN) senator during his daily morning press conferences, Gálvez was turned away at the gates of Mexico City’s National Palace on Monday, June 12, despite having a judicial order in hand outlining her right to defend herself at the federal executive’s daily event.

AMLO’s public disdain for Gálvez began back in December 2022, when the PAN senator characterized the social programs implemented by López Obrador’s National Regeneration Movement (Morena) as “insufficient,” noting that while she supported giving financial resources to Mexico’s lowest-income populations, in her opinion these programs will not create long-term progress without accompanying educational resources and job opportunities.

“I agree with supporting those who have less, of course I agree with these financial transfers, but it seems to me that it is an insufficient program on its own,” said Gálvez at the time. “Something I learned from my grandfather is to earn your food by working and I think that what we have to do is make these financial supports temporary, give the population skills, education, certifications and job skills, and generate sources of employment so that people can get ahead.”

López Obrador went on to misrepresent Gálvez’s words to the public, taking to his publicly broadcast daily morning press conference on Dec. 5, 2022, to tell the nation that “Mrs. Xóchitl Gálvez has just said that she is going to remove the support programs for the elderly.”

Gálvez was later given a court order for her right to reply to AMLO by Mexico City’s Second District Court in Civil Matters Judge Hugo Roberto Pérez, which would allow Gálvez to take the microphone of the presidential podium at the daily morning press conference and defend herself in the exact place she was publicly misrepresented by the federal executive.

However, despite the judicial order in her favor, this opportunity for self defense would not come to pass; while Gálvez arrived early in the morning to Gate 1 of the National Palace, the entrance designated for administrative personnel and the press, the PAN senator was ultimately denied access to AMLO’s Monday morning press conference.

After waiting for more than an hour knocking for admission to no avail, Gálvez eventually gave up her quest at 7 a.m., when AMLO’s press conference officially began.

“Solving the problem was so simple, the president had to admit his mistake and admit that he lied that I never said that I wanted to get rid the program for the elderly, but he does not admit to it because he does not like reality, he prefers his other data,” said Gálvez at the time.

 “It is worth reminding the president of his most famous phrase: Among individuals as among nations, the respect for the rights of others is peace and here today he is not respecting my rights,” continued the Gálvez. “He himself backtracks. First he said that if a judge ordered it, he would give me the space to speak. Now he wants me to do my own conference. Either he forgets or is unaware that the right to reply must be in the same space under the conditions that were provoked. He showed that his commitment to the law and the honor of his word has been nothing more than a worthless speech.”

For his part, López Obrador took to that very same morning press conference to address the controversy, noting that his presidential administration will file an appeal to the judicial order giving Gálvez her right to reply, claiming the senator’s actions were only for the sake of “publicity.”

Leave a Reply