Expert Pitch

Political scientist: López Obrador may be more pragmatic than expected

Indiana University
3-Jul-2018 12:05 PM EDT, by Indiana University

Andres Manuel López Obrador won Mexico's July 1 presidential election by repeating the successful formula of other populist candidates in Latin America, said Armando Razo, associate professor of political science at Indiana University Bloomington. He ran as an outsider amidst deep mistrust of establishment politicians, and his campaign resonated with a discontented citizenry, which demanded major changes to address Mexico's severe economic and political problems, especially rampant insecurity and political violence in recent years.

But the big question is how López Obrador will actually govern after he gets inaugurated on Dec. 1, said Razo, who is available by email to answer news media questions about the election.

"It's too early to say, but current signs indicate that he might be less radical than expected from his campaign pronouncements -- to the relief of his detractors and potential disillusionment from core supporters," he said.

"He won't be tempted to bypass institutional checks as other populist governments in the region have done for a couple of reasons. In an election that only requires a plurality to win, he received more than 50 percent of the vote, an unprecedented popular mandate. And, most importantly, López Obrador's party is also likely to control the bicameral Congress, so he will face a more favorable institutional environment than his predecessors who had to govern under more divided government."

López Obrador's contentious exchanges with business actors during the campaign produced worries about potentially drastic changes in economic policy. But "economic worries were somewhat mitigated when López Obrador adopted a more conciliatory tone towards business right before the election, which he and his advisors have reiterated this week to reassure investors that there won't be drastic economic changes," Razo said.

In terms of foreign policy, Razo said, populism in Latin America has typically carried an anti-American sentiment, but proximity to the U.S. and dependence of foreign trade and migrant remittances warrant a more pragmatic approach from López Obrador, as opposed to the more antagonistic stance of leaders like the former president of Venezuela, Hugo Chavez.

"But we won't know for a while how U.S.-Mexico relations will proceed because several critical issues like NAFTA renegotiations have been put on hold until after U.S. midterm elections," he said.

To reach Razo, contact Steve Hinnefeld at 812-856-3488 or slhinnef@iu.edu.

Filters close

Showing results

110 of 5520
Released: 1-Oct-2020 5:05 PM EDT
WashU Expert: Judge Barrett’s religion not a confirmation issue
Washington University in St. Louis

Questions about Amy Coney Barrett’s religious affiliation and beliefs have dominated public discourse since President Donald Trump announced that she was his pick to fill the U.S. Supreme Court seat left vacant by Ruth Bader Ginsburg’s passing. While her faith is considered controversial by some, should it impact her confirmation?John Inazu, the Sally D.

Newswise: Vaccine Opposition Online Uniting Around ‘Civil Liberties’ Argument
1-Oct-2020 10:40 AM EDT
Vaccine Opposition Online Uniting Around ‘Civil Liberties’ Argument
George Washington University

Anti-vaccination discourse on Facebook increased in volume over the last decade, coalescing around the argument that refusing to vaccinate is a civil right, according to a study published today in the American Journal of Public Health.

Released: 1-Oct-2020 1:55 PM EDT
There is no evidence to support claims that the ballots were disposed of by mail carriers in Pennsylvania
Newswise

Diamond and Silk—the former Fox Nation online personalities, claim that the recently discovered nine discarded ballots in Luzerne County, Pennsylvania were tossed out by anti-Trump United States Postal Service mail carriers. The pair shared the article on social media where it received thousands of likes and shares.

Released: 1-Oct-2020 11:50 AM EDT
Fact-checking Trump's Claim that Mail-in Ballots Will Lead to a ‘Rigged’ Election
Newswise

In the first debate between incumbant President Donald Trump and the Democratic nominee, Former Vice President Joe Biden, Trump reiterated that mail-in ballots lead to voter fraud and will lead to a rigged election. This claim is false. There is no evidence that mail-in ballots are rigging the election. "Unsolicited" mail-in ballots have been used for years in several states, with little to no evidence of voter fraud.

Newswise: 244478_web.jpg
Released: 30-Sep-2020 3:50 PM EDT
Friend-to-friend texting may be the most effective voter mobilization tactic during 2020 election
Data Science Institute at Columbia University

Friend-to-friend text messaging may be the new door-to-door canvassing leading up to the 2020 election.

Released: 30-Sep-2020 3:05 PM EDT
Trump's Claim That He Has the Support of Portland's Sheriff Is False
Newswise

Trump's Claim that he has the support of Portland's Sheriff is False

Released: 30-Sep-2020 2:50 PM EDT
Former Vice President Joe Biden never said that he attended Delaware State
Newswise

Biden was referring to when he announced his first Senate bid on the campus of Delaware State College in 1972.


Showing results

110 of 5520

close
1.41515