After seven decades a leftist president is sworn into Mexico
By Kimberly Linares, Staff Writer
Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador was sworn in as the new Mexican President Saturday, promising radical change in a country struggling with violence, poverty and corruption.
On July 1, Obrador won a landslide victory against his opponents with a vision for Mexico which differed greatly from its current administration. Bringing about positive changes to a country that has not seen it in over decades.
During his swearing in, Obrador reaffirmed his intentions in selling Mexico’s official presidential plane and to not live in Los Piños, the presidential residence. Along with his salary being reduced to 40% and adding a promise that he will never seek reelection. Cutting out government graft will save enough money to pay for promised college scholarships for the young and larger pensions for the elderly.
“I no longer belong to myself, I belong to you, I belong to the people of Mexico,” Lopez Obrador said in his first speech directed towards the nation.
Mexico will undergo a peaceful and orderly transition, but one that is deep and radical to ensure change.
“He was the first to give universal pension to seniors, he created 16 high schools in marginal areas,” said Dario Manuel Lopez Pineda a Mexican citizen to CNN. “He created such seemingly insignificant things such as permanent driver licenses so that the government would not keep taking money from the people.”
Obrador describes two basic failures within the Mexican government and believes that Peña Nieto is the one to blame. The first being, the corruption made present among the Mexican political elite, and the escalating crime violence that was ignored by the former president. Second, being the unequal economic growth and the failure to empower the country’s underprivileged citizens over the past 30 years.
“Search and find, they are words that are short but impossible for the state,” said Juan Carlos Trujillo in a video published by BBC News.
According to the National Public Security System, 2017 was the most violent year in Mexico since 1926. In the span of 12 months 29,168 homicides were committed. Despite these numbers going public violence within Mexico does not diminish.
Corruption has long been a drag on Mexico, shaving an estimated two percentage points off of Mexico’s gross domestic product per year. 10 former presidents have been removed from office, jailed or placed under investigation on allegations of graft in the past few years.
“I look very much forward to working with him. There is much to be done that will benefit both the United States and Mexico!” said President Donald Trump in one of his recent tweet regarding Mexico’s new president Obrador.
Among the challenges that the new government will face under Obrador will be deciding what to do concerning Tijuana and the Central American caravan there but he believes he will be up to the task.
“I want to go down in history as a good president,” said Obrador.