2022 is gearing up to be a fascinating year for keen observers of the Mexican political scene and the nation’s colorful president, Andres Manuel López Obrador, now in the third year of his six-year administration.
As promised during his campaign, AMLO is eager to press forward with a recall referendum (revocación de mandato) on his presidency —tentatively scheduled between March 27 and April 10. While most of his detractors have called the vote an expensive irrelevancy at a critical time for the nation, Lopez Obrador has defended the exercise as an important step for participatory democracy. “If they don’t like what I’m doing, the people can boot me out,” he has often said.
The referendum will be the fourth during AMLO’s term of office; previously citizens have been asked to vote on whether former presidents should be prosecuted for alleged crimes, and the futures of the Mexico City airport and Maya tourist train. On none of those occasions, however, did the vote reach anywhere close to 40 percent of the electorate, the level required for the revocación to be considered legally binding.