Prior to the country’s 2024 general election, tens of thousands of people marched in support of Mexican President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador on Sunday through the heart of the nation’s capital.
“Mexico is no longer run by oligarchy, now there is a democratic system whose priority is the poor,” the president told people crowding the vast Zocalo square at the city’s center.
The 2023 increase could be around 20%, according to Lopez Obrador, whose administration has increased the minimum wage by double digits over the past four years. He also predicted that the country’s economic growth would exceed expectations.
As the 69-year-old president of state crossed the square, supporters, many of whom had taken buses to get to the capital, shook his hand and posed for photos with him while others waved flags for the ruling National Regeneration Movement (MORENA) party.
“The president is from a humble background. He’s done a lot of social programs,” said Teresa Magana, who pooled money with a group of 40 to travel 12 hours from Tabasco, the president’s home state. We want him to continue”.
The speech came after a five-hour march down Reforma Avenue in the capital and mariachi performances in the main square. About 60% of people approve of the president.
Only one six-year term is allowed for Mexican presidents. Both Mexico City Mayor Claudia Sheinbaum and Foreign Minister Marcelo Ebrard, who attended the march, are possible contenders for their respective parties in the summer of 2024 election.
The march comes a fortnight after tens of thousands of opponents of the president’s desire to change the nation’s voting system took to the streets in the biggest protest against his initiatives to date.
Congress began debating the strategy at the beginning of this month. In his proposal, Lopez Obrador, also known by his initials AMLO, claims to improve democracy, limit economic influence in politics, and reduce advertising time. His opponents, however, are concerned that the change could be a sign of a power grab.
The plan would alter the election process for council members and cut the INE electoral commission’s funding.
On Sunday, some protesters carried coffin-shaped signs bearing the word INE.
“AMLO criticizes the salaries of INE councillors,” wrote columnist Sergio Negrete on Twitter. “With the cost of his ego-boosting march, he could pay the salaries of 11 INE councillors for 43 years and three months.”