Friday, October 16, 2009

Rudderless Ship

Leo Zuckermann, referencing the confused PRI response to abortion policy, Calderón's economic package, and the LyFC takeover, wonders about the party's lack of leadership:
Every party requires a project and leadership to carry it out. It's evident that the PRI doesn't have either one. On the one hand, it's a federation of economic and political interests to for whom it is difficult to agree on a common posture. On the other, there still hasn't emerged a dominant leadership that defines the path that they are taking and how to react to the stances of the government.

Without a project or clear leadership, the PRI is a party with vacilating positions on what to do with their power. It seems that the strategy of Calderón is working. Launching deep changes, which corners the PRI: it makes evident the lack of definition of the priístas that want to return to Los Pinos but don't know how.
It's striking how quickly the idea that the PRI is the center of Mexican politics and Calderón's day had passed has petered out. From the budget proposal to the informe to the LyFC, all of the biggest post-election moments have come from Los Pinos.

A lot of that has nothing to do with the PRI, but I do think that a lot of the shift back to Los Pinos has to do with, as Zuckermann argues, a lack of leadership and, consequently, coherence to the PRI's agenda. That was a good point hidden in César Nava's otherwise largely forgettable defense of the LyFC takeover earlier this week. The PRI's project for 2009 was winning the elections, not presenting a coherent vision for Mexico. So now that they've won, we see them arguing for 18-year-old deputies. Obviously, that's not the extent of the PRI's activity since July, but what we definitely have not seen is a broad, party-wide, integrated plan for where Mexico needs to go.

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