Claudia Sheinbaum Sweeps Mexican Elections, First Woman President In Mexico History

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Mexico made history getting its first ever female president, Claudia Sheinbaum, who, according to officials the Mexican elections. It was voted by between 58.3% and 60.7% percent of support with a 100 million voters turnout. She ran for the left-wing National Movement for Reconstruction (Morena). Sheinbaum said: “For the first time in the 200 years of the republic, Mexico will have a female president, and it will be a transformation. Thank you to all Mexicans.
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Sheinbaum was a renowned scientist before entering politics until recently, she was the mayor of the Mexican capital, but she is considered a committed leftist and a close ally of outgoing President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador. 

Voting, we proved that we are a democratic people. This is a triumph for the people of Mexico,” said the winner of the election in her first address as president. She assured that she will not disappoint the citizens.

She promised to continue several policies started by her mentor and the outgoing president, who could not run because the Mexican constitution only allows presidents one term of 6 years. 98 million voters at the federal level also chose 628 members of Congress yesterday – 128 senators and 500 members of the Chamber of Deputies. At the same time, they also elected several governors, more than 1,000 congressmen in most of the 31 federal states, mayors and councilors in almost 1,600 municipalities, and candidates for a total of around 20,000 positions.

It was the largest election in the country’s history, and it was marked by numerous murders of politicians and officials and their family members. “I did not arrive alone, we all arrived. With the heroines who gave us our homeland, our ancestors, our mothers, our daughters and our granddaughters,” said Sheinbaum when celebrating her triumph as the first president in 200 years of history.

Sheinbaum, of the ruling leftist Morena party, said that Gálvez, leader of an opposition coalition, called her to congratulate her on the victory.

“Now is the time to leave the bitterness of the campaign behind,” acknowledged Gálvez, who had doubted his rival’s victory before the official results were known.

Sheinbaum also celebrated that his party can achieve the qualified majority it was looking for in both chambers of Congress, which will allow it to have a “super government” that the popular López Obrador could not count on during his six-year term.

“Today is a day of glory because the people of Mexico decided freely and democratically that Claudia Sheinbaum becomes the first female president in 200 years of independent life of our Republic. Congratulations to all of us who have the joy of living in these stellar times of pride and transformation,” AMLO wrote on his X account.

Sheinbaum, 61 years old and former mayor of Mexico City, promises to continue the legacy of the current president although with her “own stamp” to mitigate violence linked to organized crime, stimulate the economy, promote renewable energy and tackle corruption.

Throughout the campaign, polls gave the scientist a wide lead over her closest contender, Gálvez, a 61-year-old businesswoman who competed for an opposition coalition made up of the once hegemonic PRI, the right-wing PAN and the leftist PRC.

Sheinbaum had asked his followers not to get complacent and “crowd” the polls during the day, in a clear attempt to ensure control of two-thirds in both chambers of Congress, which would allow him to approve constitutional reforms that López Obrador could not carry out.

The president-elect has an outstanding career as a scientist. She is a physicist and has a doctorate in Environmental Engineering.

Born to scientific parents, she not only inherited the academic inclination from them, but also the political one, since both were left-wing activists. “In my house we talked about politics at breakfast, lunch and dinner,” she says in the biography written by Arturo Cano.

“That duality between doing politics to transform the world and, at the same time, this academic, scientific sense, was where I grew up,” Sheinbaum said in a documentary about his life presented at the end of last year and directed by his son.

Sheinbaum was born on June 24, 1962 in the Mexican capital into a family of Jewish origin. Her paternal grandfather came to Mexico from Lithuania in the 1920s, and his maternal family came from Bulgaria after fleeing Nazism.

At the age of 15, she became involved with the movement of mothers who were searching for their children who had disappeared by the State, led by Rosario Ibarra , a renowned human rights activist and leftist politician who was the first woman to run in a presidential election in Mexico in 1982.

After graduating as a physicist in 1989 from the public National Autonomous University of Mexico (UNAM), she completed a master’s degree and then a doctorate at the same university.

While preparing her doctoral thesis, she enjoyed an academic stay on a scholarship at the University of California.

And in 2000 he formally began his political career.

A friend put her in contact with the current president, López Obrador, who was about to take office as mayor of Mexico City in December of that year and was looking for a left-wing scientist to help him with the environmental problem in the capital. She accepted the position of Secretary of the Environment.

She held the portfolio until 2006, when she became spokesperson for López Obrador’s campaign for the presidential election that year. A year later, in 2007, she was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize as part of a UN panel of experts for her efforts to spread knowledge about climate change.

In 2018, she became the first woman elected mayor of the capital in the same elections in which AMLO achieved victory and the presidency in his third attempt.

Why Sheinbaum won and the challenges he faces

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The former mayor presented as her great value the time she spent in the mayor’s office of Mexico City, a usual springboard for the presidency.

During his time in the capital he focused on educational policies, reducing insecurity, which will now be his great challenge when governing the entire country, as well as the pollution of one of the largest cities in Latin America.

But Sheinbaum also benefited from the high popularity of López Obrador, of whom she is a political ally. The current president has an approval level of 60% after a six-year term characterized by a good economic moment, with very low unemployment and a historic reduction in poverty.

The results achieved by Sheinbaum this Sunday are much broader than those of AMLO.

“First the poor” is one of the phrases that defines AMLO, who promised what he has called the “Fourth Transformation” of the country that he now hopes will deepen in the hands of Sheinbaum, whom he supported to succeed him as president.

She promises continuity, but wants to give it what she defines as her “own stamp” with some different objectives, such as paying more attention to energy and climate change policies in a country with up to 11 femicides per day.

Beyond insecurity, other challenges will have to do with the economy with a challenging fiscal situation due to the increase in pension payments and social programs by AMLO.

The new president, who will begin her six-year term on October 1, will also face complicated negotiations with the United States over the flow of migrants crossing Mexico and cooperation on drug trafficking.

Those negotiations could be more complicated if Donald Trump wins the presidential election in November.

What is now certain is that Sheinbaum, the first female president in the country’s history, won in Mexico.

And he will face the position with more power than AMLO, since in the best scenario he is projected to have qualified majorities of two thirds in both chambers of Congress, so he will have a “supergovernment.”

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