The ex-governor of Campeche has been declared the winner of the election to lead the Institutional Revolutionary Party (PRI).
Alejandro Moreno and is running mate, Carolina Viggiano, won Sunday’s election with over 1.6 million ballots in their favor, or 85% of the vote.
The election of Moreno to the party’s presidency could be a watershed moment for the PRI, a party which political analysts say is already seeing the toughest times of its 90-year history.
“The PRI is going through the worst moment in its history . . .” said political analyst José Fernández Santillán. “It was the official party from 1929 to 2000, in power for 71 years, then from 2000 to 2012, it was the opposition party, and it had its second chance until 2018. But the upcoming elections in 2021 could lead it into a third stage it has never before experienced: that of an outlying satellite party.”
Moreno could be the catalyst that brings the PRI’s downfall to that third stage.
“If Alejandro Moreno is elected head of the PRI, the most probable outcome is that the party will become subordinate to the government of Andrés Manuel López Obrador. They call Moreno ‘Alito,’ but his politics are so similar to the president’s that many call him ‘Amlito,’” Fernández said before Sunday’s vote.
The PRI lost the presidency in 2018 with López Obrador’s election, when it was reduced to the No. 3 party in Mexico, with only 47 of the 500 deputies and 14 of 128 senators. It governs only 11 of the country’s 32 states.
Allegations of corruption against former president Peña Enrique Nieto, as well as several former PRI governors, have led to the party’s decline.
Moreno’s rise to the party’s leadership could be the final nail in the coffin.
“The only thing that victory for Alejandro Moreno will do,” said Enrique Toussaint, political analyst at the University of Guadalajara, “is deepen the PRI’s tendency to destroy itself.”