Jalisco witnessed a major changing of the guard Sunday as voters gave a big thumbs down to the usually dominant Institucional Revolutionary Party (PRI) in state and municipal elections.
The political realignment saw former Guadalajara Mayor Enrique Alfaro of the Movimiento Ciudadano (Citizens Movement or MC) romp home in the gubernatorial race by a 15-point margin ahead of Carlos Lomeli of the “Let’s Make History” coalition.
In an astonishing turnaround from six years ago, the PRI’s Miguel Castro won just 16.6 percent of the vote.
In addition, the PRI lost its two seats in the federal Senate, six in the Chamber of Deputies and eight in the State Congress. In contrast to the 63 municipalities the party controlled before the election, PRI mayors will run a mere 21 city halls out of the state’s 125 municipalities.
The major beneficiary from this upheaval is the MC, a seven-year-old party that has completed a meteoric rise to become the dominant force in Jalisco politics.
The decision by the MC to join a coalition – “Mexico to the Front” – comprising the conservative National Action Party (PAN) and left-of-center Party of the Democratic Revolution (PRD) was largely unsuccessful on the national level but paid dividends in Jalisco, although Alfaro and various other candidates for mayoral posts had the confidence to fight their corners without any allies.