The prospect of leftist candidate Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador becoming the next president of Mexico is making the country’s business community nervous.
Private enterprise see the veteran activist and former mayor of Mexico City as a dangerous populist firebrand diametrically opposed to the primacy of the profit motive. And as the July 1 election draws nearer, Ricardo Anaya, a conservative economist running under the coalition banner headed by the National Action Party (PAN), is seen as the only person capable of beating AMLO, as he is often referred to, at the polls.
In line with the belief that the third-place presidential candidate, Jose Antonio Meade of the discredited ruling Institutional Revolutionary Party (PRI), has no chance of beating Lopez Obrador, leaders of the conservative and/or business communities are exhorting his supporters to place their vote where it won’t be wasted: with Anaya.
According to Lopez Obrador, this “lesser-of-evils” tactic, which Anaya himself believes has his main rival shaking in his boots, is a “hallucination” that will prove fruitless in the face of the overwhelming support the twice-defeated candidate enjoys.
Spokespersons for Meade – and independent candidate Margarita Zavala – are adamant in their assertion that the business community is sparing none of its considerable fiscal resources to pressure their candidates into quitting the campaign. Neither representative seems ready to bow to such pressure.