Mexico: the old one-party dominant regime becomes a democracy – political and social trends towards democracy in view of the presidential elections of 2000

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Technische Universität Dresden Course: Latin American Political Development Instructor: Silvia Inclán Summer 2009

Mexico: The old one-party dominant regime becomes a democracy –
Political and Social Trends towards Democracy in view of the Presidential Elections of 2000
04.09.2009

Josephine Wragge 2nd Semester International Relations Matrikel.No: 3521502 E-mail: JosiW@gmx.de

Table ofContents
1. Introduction – perceptions of the PRI defeat in 2000…………………………………………….3 2. The hegemony of the PRI – Mexico´s one party system…………………………………………4 2.1. The installation of the PRI regime………………………………………………………………………….4 2.2. The PRI and its sui generis authoritarian nature…………………………………………………….6 2.3. PRI: The road toward defeat ……………………………………………………………………………….13 3 The moment of Civil Society?..................................................................................20 3.1. Social movements and participative political culture……………………………………………21 3.1. Attitudes towards democracy………………………………………………………………………………22 4. Conclusion……………………………………………………………………………………………………………24

Annex
5. Tables and Figures ……………………………………………………………………………………………….26 5.1.Tables………………………………………………………………………………………………………………….26
a) Table 1- Measures of Democratic Attitudes: Tolerance, Obedience and Interpersonal Trust b) Table 2 - Civil Support for Democratic and Non-Democratic Government c) Table 3 - Civil Satisfaction with Democracy and Perception of Respect for Human Rights d) Table 4 (1) - Democratic Attitudes in Mexico by Education e) Table 4 (2) – Democratic Attitudes in Mexico by Education f) Table 4 (3) - Breakdown of Support for Presidential Elections 2000 g) Table5 - Political Authoritarianism: Support or Rejection of Democratic Liberties h) Table 6 - Results of the Congressional Elections 1943-1985 in % i) Table 7 - Results of the Presidential Elections 1940-1982 in % j) Table 8- Results of the Congressional Elections 1988-2000 in % k) Table 9 – Results of the Presidential Elections 1988-2000 in % l) Table 10 - Proportional Share of Seats in the Chamberof Senators 1991-2000

5.2. Figures………………………………………………………………………………………………………………..31
a) Figure 1- Results of Presidential Elections 1929-2000 b) Figure 2- Results of Elections- Cámara de Senadores c) Figure 3 – PRI: Proportional Share of seats in both Chambers of the Congress 1946- 1994 d) Figure 4 – The Freedom House –Civil Liberties and Political Rights 1980-2005 e) Figure 5 – Authority Trends,1946-2007 f) Figure 6 – Mexican Electoral Turnout 1961 -1994 in %

6. Bibliography………………………………………………………………………………………………………..34
2

1.) Introduction – perceptions of the PRI defeat in 2000
The fall of the Institutional Revolutionary Party (Partido Revolucionario Institucional - PRI) in July 2000 has been qualified as a milestone in Mexico’s political history and a “political earthquake” byhistorians and political science scholars, as well as the end of what Mexicans themselves referred to as “el sistema”, the PRI party and its governance not as a system, but the system.1 The victory of the electoral alliance of the Partido de Acción Nacional (PAN) and Partido Verde Ecologísta de México (PVEM) parties, Alianza por el Cambio, and its candidate Vicente Fox determined the end of PRI’sseventy-one year lasting incumbency (1929-2000) and inspired the literature after the successful transition of government, alternancia, to talk of a major political change and the final achievement and implementation of democracy.2 Whereas some define this very moment as democracy prevailing over authoritarian rule, others regard the political transition as a historical process, as the following citeof the political scientist Jose Woldenberg illustrates: “La transición no es una idea ni un esquema preconcebido; no es el proyecto de un grupo ni de un partido; no tiene protagonista privilegiado ni un sujeto único; no es una fecha, una coyuntura, una reforma, un episodio y mucho menos una campaña electoral (...) es la suma de...
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