Results of the so-called quick count for the presidential election will be made public between 10:00 and 11:30pm Sunday, the president of the National Electoral Institute (INE) said today.
Lorenzo Córdova told broadcaster Milenio Television that whether there is “a wide margin or a very narrow one” between the four presidential candidates, he will appear on national television between those times to announce the tally of the conteo rápido, or quick count.
Asked whether the trend shown in the count — which is based on a sample of votes collected from 5% of all polling stations across the country — would be “scientifically irreversible,” Córdova responded “absolutely.”
The INE president said the quick count will provide information about voter turnout and give a range for the percentage of the vote that each candidate obtained.
“Candidate A will win between this and that percentage [of the vote], Candidate B [will win] between this and that percentage . . .” Córdova explained.
He said responsibility for the quick count falls to a technical committee made up of nine of Mexico’s most esteemed mathematicians and statisticians.
Four of the numbers gurus are academics at the National Autonomous University of México (UNAM), three come from the Autonomous Technical Institute of Mexico (ITAM) and two are from the Metropolitan Autonomous University (UAM), Córdova said.
All have previous experience in conducting quick counts with “a high degree of precision” and “have never been wrong,” he added.
After polls close on Sunday evening, Córdova said, Mexico will enter into a “very delicate moment in the political life of the country” and therefore it is important that the “information vacuum” is “filled with official information from the INE” rather than speculation and hearsay.
He also called on citizens to turn out and vote en masse on Sunday in order to send a clear message that they are not intimidated by political violence. Almost 50 candidates have been killed since the electoral process officially began last September.
The official campaign period concluded at 12:00am today, meaning that an advertising blackout is now in force and thousands of candidates around the country — including the four presidential hopefuls — can no longer lobby the electorate for their votes.
Leading presidential candidate Andrés Manuel López Obrador officially closed his campaign last night with a massive rally at the country’s largest sports stadium, the Estadio Azteca in southern Mexico City.
The enthusiastic crowd received the candidate with a rapturous chant of “presidente! presidente!” as he appeared on stage to make his final public pre-election address.
Ricardo Anaya, who has consistently polled in second place, held his final campaign event in León, Guanajuato, with thousands of supporters of the three-party right-left coalition he heads.
Anaya once again declared that the For Mexico in Front coalition is the only alliance that can stop López Obrador from winning the presidency and called on the electorate to cast a voto útil or strategic vote in his favor.
Independent Jaime “El Bronco” Rodríguez, who took leave as governor of Nuevo León to contest the election and has shocked the public at times with proposals such as chopping off thieves’ hands, finished up his bid for the presidency with a live virtual event on Facebook.
Polls will open across the country at 8:00am Sunday, with millions of voters casting ballots for thousands of positions at municipal, state and federal levels.