Mexican peso rallies as exit polls show Lopez Obrador win

Gladys Abbott
July 4, 2018

An official quick-count revealed that Lopez Obrador took the lead with 53-53.8% of votes, according to the electoral authority.

Voters decided in their millions to turn their backs on the two parties which have ruled Mexico for nearly 100 years, and finally give him a chance - sending his supporters into a frenzy.

Despite Trump's conciliatory tone, a White House aide on Monday repeated one of the USA leader's most controversial 2016 election campaign promises that he carried into his presidency. She is now based in Mexico City. Newspaper El Financiero's exit poll gave him 49 percent of the vote to 27 percent for Anaya and 18 percent for Meade.

"There is a lot of inequality, a lot of violence in this country", said Lopez Obrador voter Hugo Carlos, 73.

The elections have significance for the United States as well.

Only time will tell if these two non-traditional candidates will be able to build a non-traditional partnership that benefits both countries.

During a May debate, AMLO said he wants "a friendly relationship with the government of the United States, but not one of subordination". He later joined the Party of the Democratic Revolution and more recently formed his own party, the National Regeneration Movement - known as MORENA.

Lopez Obrador's supporters began wild celebrations in Mexico City, cruising up and down the central Paseo de la Reforma boulevard honking horns to the tune of "Viva Mexico!" and waving Mexican flags from auto windows and moon roofs. But it does represent a major shift - representing the largest margin of victory by any candidate in Mexican history.

President Donald Trump tweeted after the election results started coming in, writing: "Congratulations to Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador on becoming the next President of Mexico".

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He left in a decidedly more presidential luxury SUV - though he rolled down the windows to wave to adoring supporters - underscoring that the man who spent the last 12 years as a persistent government critic from outside the halls of power must now govern amid considerable challenges for the country, and deliver on ambitious but vaguely outlined campaign promises.

Olga Sanchez Cordero, a retired Supreme Court judge who was expected to be named interior secretary if Lopez Obrador wins, recently told Reforma newspaper that the amnesty would be a "pacification strategy" that would shield some low-level criminals who grow, use and transport narcotics.

Mexico recorded about 29,000 killings past year, the highest annual number since modern records started being kept two decades ago.

Lopez Obrador will take office on December 1.

This worries some Mexicans, who see Lopez Obrador as unpredictable, prone to outbursts of emotion and quick to change his mind on issues.

Seeking to soothe, he has recruited a team of market-friendly advisers and backpedaled on his most controversial proposals, including reversing outgoing President Enrique Pena Nieto's landmark energy reform, which privatized the oil sector.

Polls have opened in Mexico's presidential and local elections, and front-running candidate Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador is among the first to line up at his polling place in Mexico City.

"We can bring a voice to the poor and marginalized, we can bring change, we can win".

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