Mexican presidential elections are scheduled for July 1, 2012, and a Wells Fargo economist cautions against underestimating politics.
Nobody should take the presidential elections process lightly either, especially since there is a big chance that the Institutional Revolutionary Party (PRI), the party that ruled the country for 70 consecutive years, could win the contest, says Eugenio Aleman, an economist with Wells Fargo Securities, in a note to the clients.
Alternatively, it could be the case that Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador (AMLO), the feisty candidate from the Party of the Democratic Revolution (PRD) party, might win and send troubling vibes through the financial markets, says Aleman.
He says the whole contest could be a destabilizing force for the economy even though the past two consecutive presidential elections were highly non-eventful by Mexican presidential election standards.
One potential guarantee that the coming election could become contentious is the fact that the PRD has elected AMLO as a presidential candidate once again.
Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador, the returning presidential candidate for the PRD, has always said that the National Action Party (PAN), the party in power, stole the elections from him in 2006 and run a mock or shadow government for many years. Andres has always called the administration of the current President of Mexico, Felipe Calderon, an illegal government, Aleman points out.
However, Aleman does not believe this will actually happen this time around, as it seems that AMLO has finally learned from the Brazilian and Peruvian examples.
It will not be strange if AMLO gets some advice from the ex-Brazilian president Lula da Silva's advisors to tone down his leftist rhetoric and to win the presidential elections, as Ollanta Humala did in Peru, says Aleman.
Of course, AMLO will never accept such an influence, at least publicly, because of the deeply rooted nationalistic feelings in Mexico, but it is not difficult to believe that either he has gotten advice from them or that he has learned on his own from those experiences, says Aleman.
He says that whatever may be the reason, it is clear that the end result is a more conciliatory AMLO than he has been during the past five years.
AMLO has even gone to some of the media outlets that he combated and accused of being anti-democratic during the past five years and made conciliatory gestures, a sort of smoking of the peace pipe, with some of the big media outlets in the country.
What seems to be clear today is that the PAN, Calderon's party, has little chance of winning for the third consecutive time since Vicente Fox beat the PRI to break 70 years of political dominance.
Thus, the fight will be between the PRI political machinery and the PRD's inconsistent message and varied national political clout. However, even though it is highly unlikely that the PAN will win again, the party followers could become fundamental for the PRI and PRD candidates, as they will decide who will govern Mexico for the next six years, says Aleman.