What’s Next for Andrés Manuel López Obrador?

What’s Next for Andrés Manuel López Obrador?

MEXICO CITY -- Andrés Manuel López Obrador marked the second anniversary of his "legitimate government" -- a symbolic opposition shadow government -- with a rally in Mexico City, Nov. 23. But the mood was hardly festive, as the scorned 2006 presidential runner-up suffered a series of crushing setbacks in the preceding weeks.

The energy reform package he branded as "privatization" and crusaded tirelessly against throughout 2008 was approved by Congress in late October, with backing from lawmakers in his own Democratic Revolution Party (PRD). The federal electoral tribunal dealt him a blow Nov. 12 when it overturned the annulled PRD internal election and awarded the party leadership to an anti-López Obrador faction. Adding insult to injury, PRD lawmakers loyal to the new party leadership began withholding monthly support payments of up to $1,500 that finance his "legitimate government."

Undeterred, López Obrador unveiled a new theme for winning support during the upcoming third year of his running campaign of opposition: Rescuing the slumping "family economy," and railing against the small band of business elites and the "political mafia" that he says control the country and which he blames for rigging the 2006 election.

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