Build an Alternative, not an Opposition

Leélo en español.

A month ago, the Mexican President, Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador, claimed the Opposition is useless; that they have no propositions; and that they are nothing more than obstacles to his government. Unfortunately, he is right.

Since the beginning of the current Mexican administration, the three main political parties that make up the Opposition have been a mediocre hurdle to Lopez Obrador´s ambitions. That, indeed, is an achievement on its own. In the political arena, however, no one wins solely by being reactive. Lopez Obrador and his party (MORENA) have passed many bills into law, while the Opposition seems to rule themselves by the saying: “What´s done is done.”

Mexico does not need an Opposition; it requires an Alternative. And there is not a single person—much less one of the political parties—who embodies it right now in the national political arena.

These political parties have given statements, signed documents, and posted videos arguing that Lopez Obrador’s public policies are harmful, deceitful, or antidemocratic. Yet, it is almost impossible to find in those statements, documents, and videos concrete proposals for what to do instead. They do not just have to resist; they have to push too.

If the administration sends a bill that would enable the government to control the electricity sector, the Opposition will cry about it and will try to stop it. An Alternative, on the other hand, will take advantage of the fact that the issue is already being discussed and will introduce another bill to further liberalize the electric sector. To fight ideas with ideas, rather than with tears. I do not see a movement growing in Mexico with compelling ideas that give results that truly counter the country´s predominant statist political mindset.

The main issue with the Opposition, in my opinion, is that they share some of the President’s ideology, which is why they only oppose it rather than propose a different path. The Opposition does not like who drives the car, but it likes the car itself. Sadly, the difference is not one of path but of degree.

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