Monday, November 9, 2009

Another State Leans PRI

Last week, Mitofsky released some preliminary polls for voter preferences in Chihuahua, where they will be electing a new governor next year. Somewhat surprisingly, it's all PRI: 42 percent said they will vote for the PRI, against 19 percent who said they'd go with the PAN. Of course this can change a lot once the candidates are selected, but I think it's a pretty reliable barometer of default voter support for each party in Chihuahua. I say it's surprising because the PRI has held both the governor's house and the mayoralty in the state's biggest city for the past three years (much longer, in fact) during which time Chihuahua has become the nation's most violent state, and Juárez, according to some, the world's most violent city.

I don't think it's fair to entirely blame either official for the spike in violence, since the forces driving the drug trade are largely beyond the realm of state officials. Nonetheless, Chihuahua's security agencies remain corrupt and outmatched, so one would think that some voters would be encouraged to hold the present government accountable, but one would be wrong. Nor do I get the feeling that all of the citizen anger about the violence is directed toward Calderón; rather, I'd guess that the persistent support for the PRI despite the failure of PRI officials to rein in violence is an expression of lack of faith in anyone else to do a better job. Which is depressing.

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