Members of the conservative National Action Party (PAN) have called for the formation of a united front against President López Obrador and the ruling Morena party.
Former president Vicente Fox, who led the PAN to federal power for the first time ever in 2000, was among the panistas, as members and supporters of the party are known, who urged the joining of forces in order to defeat Morena at the 2021 mid-term elections.
Speaking at the party’s 24th national assembly on Sunday, Fox called on all opposition political parties and citizens’ groups to come together in a national front against the president.
“Mexico is above any one political party, color, ideology, doctrine; it’s more than all that,” he said.
“. . . We have to unite and . . . we have to defeat this fourth transformation,” the ex-president said, using López Obrador’s catch-phrase for his administration and the change he says it is bringing to Mexico.
Fox said he has met with members of the PAN – including his successor Felipe Calderón, the Institutional Revolutionary Party, the Democratic Revolutionary Party (PRD) and the Citizens’ Movement party to build support for a united opposition.
“We’re going to get on the horse again, we’re going to repeat the triumph of 2000 by exposing the lies of this character [López Obrador],” he said.
For his part, PAN national president Marko Cortés called on panistas and all “Mexicans of good will” to come together so that the party can become “Mexico’s alternative.”
He said that Mexico’s future is at risk, that the fight ahead will require greater effort and that the PAN therefore needs to bolster its ranks.
The party has the responsibility to lead the fight against López Obrador’s “populist threat,” Cortés said.
He invited party members to hit the streets of the nation’s cities and to travel to its most remote communities to seek support for the party’s cause. The PAN has to consult with the nation’s young people, students, women, working-class people, farmers and senior citizens, Cortés urged.
Also offering advice was Diego Fernández Cevallos, an elder statesman of the PAN and the party’s presidential candidate in the 1994 election.
In a video message broadcast at Sunday’s meeting, he said that panistas must maintain unity and put their egos and personal ambitions to one side in order for the party to be a credible political option and to attract society’s leaders to the conservative cause.
Fernández charged that López Obrador has brought back a system of “caudillismo,” or autocracy, to Mexico and that his government is “attempting to destroy the institutions of the country.”
In April the president was accused by his former party, the PRD, of pushing the country towards authoritarianism, while Latin America expert Shannon K. O’Neil contended in March that López Obrador was dismantling democracy by “systematically concentrating power in an already strong executive.”
Fernández said the PAN must strengthen itself as a political force so that it has the capacity to effectively stand up to the president and the Morena party.
“Today we, the panistas of the country, must understand that our historical and political responsibility . . . is to be an opposition capable of defeating all arbitrary and caudillo-like exercises of power,” he said. “That and nothing else is our task and responsibility.”
Source: El Universal (sp)