Home North AmericaMexico Napoleón Gómez Urrutia: Protect democracy, end of electoral reform

Napoleón Gómez Urrutia: Protect democracy, end of electoral reform

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Members of the SME demolish fences of the National Palace


Our path to consolidate ourselves as a democratic nation has been long and laborious. Sadly, Mexico has a history of electoral fraud and all kinds of tricks organized by the political elite of the past to break the will of the people. Fortunately, times have changed: one sign that we are finally living in a democracy is the confidence we have in electoral institutions. The general impression regarding the 2018 and 2021 elections is that the electoral authority behaved honestly and transparently, which suggests that Mexicans have an acceptable perception of said institutions. But this positive impression is not a guarantee that corrupt practices will not be replicated in the future. Within this framework, the Executive Branch presented its proposal for electoral reform.

Our democracy is getting stronger and stronger in accordance with the profound transformation that we are undergoing as a country. Although the outlook is hopeful, it is also true that corruption and undemocratic practices have permeated to the depths of our institutions. In this sense, ensuring the impeccable functioning of the electoral institution is to safeguard Mexican democracy: we must recognize that the INE has areas of opportunity that we need to correct and remedy to prevent dishonesty from invading it and impeding its work. However, the global trend towards misinformation and the proliferation of false data has prevented proper dissemination of the proposal. This reveals the need to explain, outside of myths and ideologies, the most relevant points of the electoral reform in order to understand its necessity and relevance.

In the first place, one of the main objectives is to adapt the electoral system to the political transformations that we have experienced in recent years. That is to say, it is admitted that the political reality has changed and that there are elements of the electoral system that are neither consistent nor useful in the current contexts. Therefore, the commitment is to optimize processes and institutions, and reduce the excessive expenditure of resources in electoral campaigns. In addition, modernity opens the doors for us to incorporate other types of tools that contribute to the consideration of the vote of each one of the Mexicans. It seeks to expand representation and guarantee plurality in public powers, to redirect excess resources invested in the electoral and party system and use it to meet other urgent needs of our population. The transformation of the INE aims to facilitate the exercise of citizen participation mechanisms in public life so that everyone can access the decisions that most affect us.

In order to provide our country with a safe, legal and honest electoral system, it is necessary to adjust various issues. With the reform, the INE does not disappear: it becomes the National Electoral and Consultation Institute (INEC) which will continue to be autonomous. The elimination of local electoral bodies is being discussed so that this new institute can manage approved and transparent elections throughout the country. In addition, both the INEC advisers and the TEPJF magistrates would be proposed by the three powers of the Union and elected through popular vote in open elections, with the aim of allowing the people to have greater participation.

It is proposed to reduce the number of INEC directors from 11 to seven; of senators from 128 to 96, and of deputies from 500 to 300. It is proposed that the public resource be allocated to political parties only during the electoral campaign, since there is not enough grounds to sustain this expense during the rest of the time. Likewise, with this reform the time for political propaganda on radio and television would be reduced to 30 minutes a day. Considering the need for the popular will to be heard and the means to express it accessible, the percentage of participation in a popular consultation, to be binding, would decrease from 40 to 30 percent and the possibility of using new technologies, such as voting, would be promoted. electronic.

Faced with the proposal, some social mobilizations have been raised that have passed, until now, calmly and peacefully. We know that true democracy has the political and social maturity for dissent. However, we must not forget the end that truly summons us: the well-being of all of Mexico. This purpose cannot be achieved without listening, face to face, to the needs of the people; it is necessary to know their concerns and perspectives.

This reform seeks to continue building a nation where the vote of its people is fully respected, without electoral fraud, which promotes citizen freedom to elect their representatives. The transformation of our nation is integral and permanent, for this reason we must ensure that future generations live in a Mexico where decisions are made by its citizens, in an environment of freedom of expression and confidence in electoral processes.

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