A wave of protests followed the announcement by the State of Mexico Electoral Institute (IEEM) Sunday night that Alfredo del Mazo Maza of the Institutional Revolutionary Party (PRI) was leading the vote count in the election for governor.
The final results will be announced Wednesday.
In two other elections for governor, in Coahuila PRI won by a less than one percent margin over PAN while in Nayarit PAN won by landslide. Though PRI has claimed victory in Coahuila, the State Electoral Institute announced that the final winner will be announced “when we have the full 100 percent vote count.”
Three different parties answered the IEEM announcement by announcing that President Enrique Peña Nieto as well as State of Mexico Gov. Eruviel Ávila had carried out political maneuvering to distort the election and “impose” Alfredo del Mazo.
Del Mazo was said to be leading the count with an average of 33.59 percent while National Regeneration Movement (Morena) candidate Delfina Gómez trailed closely behind with 31.53 percent of the tallied vote in 1,347 out of the selected 1,818 voting booths.
Only two of the four contending candidates conceded losing the election while Delfina Gómez protested that her tally of the preliminary vote count was removed from the truth and warned that she led the election by at least a two percent margin. She did not concede.
Other candidates were Juan Zepeda of the Democratic Revolution Party (PRD) with 18.28 percent and Josefina Vázquez Mota of National Action Party (PAN) 11.57 percent. Both candidates conceded losing the election but not without accusing President Enrique Peña Nieto of running a “campaign of state” in which the President put all resources available including over 100 visitations by presidential cabinet members to districts in the State of Mexico.
After conceding, PRD campaign coordinator Luis Sánchez Jiménez complained that “we have participated again in a contest dominated by the abuse of power. We are facing once again an election of state: let’s say it like it is. The shameless use of public funds stemming out of the federal and state governments was what branded this election.”
PAN national president Ricardo Anaya likewise blasted the use of President Enrique Peña Nieto’s office to run the election in the State of Mexico as well as in Coahuila.
PRD president Alejandra Barrales said that even in defeat the election had meant a victory for her candidate Juan Zepeda who rose from a low nine percent in the polls two months ago to more than 18 percent in the first count. She called for unity in the left wing parties, namely Morena, because “had we gone together as we should have we would have swept the election.”
Morena national president Andrés Manuel López Obrador (AMLO) did not hold a press conference “thanks to the blessings of the modern social media” but posted in his Facebook account a statement questioning the IEEM’s counting system as it had been agreed that the announcement of the leading candidate would be made when 1,818 booths had been counted. AMLO said IEEM shortchanged everyone by announcing a count of only 1,347 booths that did not give a full portrait of the electoral trend.
While PAN and PRD conceded and Morena was challenging the result of the election, Alfredo del Mazo Maza held a victory rally at PRI headquarters in State of Mexico capital Toluca thanking everyone for their cooperation. He made a call for unity and pleaded with other political parties to rally behind him to help him govern the State of Mexico.
This, however, is not bound to happen as Morena’s Delfina Gómez will wait for the final count until Wednesday to then file suit with the State of Mexico Electoral Tribunal to challenge Del Mazo’s highly questioned victory.