There was a time when the government’s report was, de facto, President’s Day. Until the 1990s, it was the day when television cameras followed the president from his residence, recorded him saying goodbye to his daughters, followed him to Congress and there they transmitted a message only interrupted by applause. In the new dynamic, Andrés Manuel López Obrador is the one who sees Mexicans having breakfast every day at seven in the morning and the cryptic speeches of the leaders of the old PRI have given way to an overwhelming media presence where silence is the anomaly.
In his second government report, the Mexican president described an optimistic social and economic outlook, despite the fact that the forecasts of all the organizations contrast with his speech and insisted that his movement enters a new stage to “avoid setbacks”, in a clear message to the rank and file for next year’s elections.
The new reality is that the president monopolizes the speech and it is difficult to find news at the two hours a day of the morning conference. With these wickers, the 66-year-old president dressed the suit that best suits him, that of didactic reiteration, to speak to the country.
López Obrador described his fight against corruption, the austerity that surrounds his government, social programs or the construction of the Santa Lucía airport and the Mayan Train as main achievements, in the midst of a context of economic recovery.
His first two years at the helm of the Fourth Transformation, he said, are an almost finished project where “95 of the 100 promises made in the Zócalo have been fulfilled,” he said in reference to the speech given after his “overwhelming” electoral victory. “Fundamentally, we really have little left. The nation project is applied from day one (…) Circumstances have forced us to make adjustments but we are not going to deviate from what is essential ”. López Obrador admitted in his speech in the courtyard of the National Palace that the country is going through two crises, one economic and the other health, but that the recovery has begun because “at the worst moment we have the best government,” he summarized.
Politically, López Obrador sowed with the subtlety of yesteryear and uncovered in the last section of his speech, what will be the main lines of his new calendar as of December. The president described to his closest team -among which were Claudia Sheinbaum, head of Government of Mexico City; Alfonso Romo, head of the Presidency and the Chancellor, Marcelo Ebrard- which will be his new stage in the movement he leads and with which he intends to convince on the street of what he has achieved in the heights. With his sights set on the June 2021 elections, as of December 1, López Obrador will conclude the stage of laying the foundations of Q4 to “continue with the revolution of consciences and fully achieve a change in mentality” , as the best way to “avoid setbacks”. López Obrador aspires that “when necessary,” the movement he leads “becomes a collective will ready to defend what has been achieved,” he warned.
For 45 minutes, the Mexican president insisted that he is leading a “moral renewal” of the country and offered questionable figures on the economy and public safety. “There are fewer kidnappings, femicides, assaults on public transport, robbery of businesses and houses,” he said. “In all these crimes there is an average decrease of 30%, although homicides and extortion increased,” he said. Official figures, however, confirmed this Tuesday that August is the second most violent of the year.
In the economic field, Lopez Obrador defended that the recovery has arrived without increasing the public debt and celebrated his good harmony with the businessmen. He dedicated some of his compliments to them, saying that most of them kept their workers during the pandemic (although officially more than a million jobs have been lost), that they pay their taxes correctly and that they increased the minimum wage by 16% last year. and 20% the current, said in reference to the million companies that create the productive fabric of the country.
Standing, wearing a blue jacket and dark tie, the Tabasco president offered his less prudish and more institutional side, but did not miss any opportunity to hit his opponents, including the “pseudo-ecologists.” On the latest cases of corruption linked to the former president of Pemex Emilio Lozoya, he insisted on the double message that he has been handling for a long time: on the one hand, he does not believe that his predecessors in office should be tried, but at the same time, he is a supporter of carry out a public consultation to try the former presidents, which would be a blow to the separation of powers in Mexico and that is unprecedented, beyond the legal inconsistencies pointed out by many experts. When he referred to the opposition, he reminded them that nothing will keep him out of their way because “the majority of Mexicans approve” of his management.
According to the poll published by EL PAIS this Monday, he has one of the highest approval rates on the continent, close to 65%, although his party is far from that figure. With the undeniable political nose that even his opponents recognize him, the López Obrador Report inaugurated the political winter this Tuesday with two clear objectives: to extend the ‘Fourth Transformation’ among the grassroots and to position his party, Morena, in the face of the elections June, where half of the chamber, 15 governors and a large number of municipal presidents will be renewed.