At a meeting of PRD leaders, party president Jesús Ortega retreated from his demand to expel AMLO for supporting candidates against the PRD, while reaffirming his belief that AMLO would never again be the party’s presidential candidate. The minutes of the meeting, read by Zacatecas governor Amalia García, said, “We believe that everyone is useful, and we will not stay on the route of throwing out or expelling anyone.” López Obrador, for his part, gave an interview that stopped characterizing the PRD and Ortega’s New Left faction as part of the ‘mafia’ that has kept him out of power. (Reforma 7/13)
Reforma published security videos of last week’s strike by a commando group to free 53 prisoners from a state prison in Zacatecas. The videos show the convoy of seven security vehicles, with lights flashing, arriving at the Cieneguillas prison in the pre-dawn hours and being waved in through the main gate, while prisoners let themselves out of their cells as their guards disappeared. Commandos wearing official-looking uniforms escorted the 53 prisoners out in a calm and ordered manner, and left the prison in less than three minutes without any resistance from the staff. Questions were also raised as to Justice Ministry and Federal Police failures– the convoy had to pass directly by their bases on their way to and from the prison. The immediate target of outrage is Zacatecas governor Amalia García of the PRD. Senator Ricardo Monreal—himself under a cloud of suspicion—said the prison break was “the result of the complicity at the highest level of the Zacatecas government.” (Reforma 5/20)
Joaquin López-Doriga’s column in Milenio is a good summary of the political environment:
With the passage of the weeks, scandal has been the constant. The book of Ahumada, from whom everyone is trying to distance themselves, without being able to deny their own past; Madrazo’s own book, as part of his effort at reinvention, accusing ex-presidents Ernesto Zedillo and Vicente Fox of ties to drug trafficking; the statements of Miguel De la Madrid recognizing that he made a mistake in selecting Carlos Salinas, talking of relationships with drug trafficking and mentioning the name of two of his brothers, Raúl and Enrique, and the civil death that Salinas decreed on his predecessor, annulling the judgment and condemning de la Madrid to political limbo; the YouTube video of Fidel Herrera and the efforts to censor the Internet; the accusations of drug trafficking against a brother of Ricardo Monreal, his saying that Amalia García has ties with organized crime, her response calling him a coward, and the counter reply saying that the governor and her daughter, Senator Claudia Corichi, were oriental queens and princesses; the flight of 53 prisoners from the jail in Zacatecas, freed by an armed commando; the dismantling of a protection network for the Beltrán Leyvas in Morelos after discovering a safe house only 100 meters from the governor’s mansion in Cuernavaca; the firing of the state attorney general, the detentions of the state minister for public safety and the Cuernavaca police chief; and the call by Manlio Fabio Beltrones to all ex-presidents to shut up until July 5th. These form the scenery against which the ongoing electoral process will yield the lowest rate of citizen participation in response to the use of scandal and double talk, cynicism and hypocrisy, as method.