Mexico City, July 5, 2018
- 1,300 Mexican citizens counted the votes of their compatriots abroad.
- The election process was observed by various leaders in the U.S. immigrant community.
On election day, July 1st, Mexico counted with the participation of 98,854 votes from Mexicans living abroad. 20,841 of those absentee votes were cast by Mexico City residents to elect the next President, City Mayor and Senators for the Congress of the Union.
The National Electoral Institute (INE- acronym in Spanish) calculated the vote totals of 106 different countries at a single primary location south of the Mexican capital. The entire process consisted of 1,300 citizens, spread out among 256 vote counting tables. The citizens would open the vote envelopes, deposit them into the ballot box associated with the electoral office, and then proceed to count the results.
In the nation’s capital, “20,841 votes were received and counted from those living abroad, and those who counted them were not the authorities, they were officials, they were neighbors who were chosen at random and they dedicated their Sunday to count the votes of their compatriots abroad,” declared the counselor of the Electoral Institute of Mexico City (IECM-acronym in Spanish) Yuri Beltran Miranda.
The absentee voter turnout for the Mexico City election was historic. Voter registration from abroad tripled compared to the last election and votes cast from Mexico City residents abroad represented approximately 21% of the total number of absentee votes.
“The total number of citizens abroad from the capital who registered to vote grew by approximately 300% for these elections compared to the participation in 2012,” Beltran Miranda said. “77% of those who received their Electoral Postal Packages returned their ballots in time to be counted, this being a great victory for Mexican democracy,” he added.
Mexico City residents living abroad decided the future of their city. According to the Program of Preliminary Electoral Results (PREP) of IECM, absentee voters helped elect, coalition candidate, “Juntos Haremos Historia,” – comprised from Morena, PT, Encuentro Social political parties – Claudia Sheinbaum as Mayor of Mexico City. She received 10,957 votes or 47% of the total votes from voters abroad.
Local and national advisors agreed that increased voter abroad participation is in large part due to social network initiatives like #VotoChilango. Through these initiatives, Mexican citizens abroad were informed on voter registration, ballot shipment and voter outcomes. This also allowed citizens to share experiences, address concerns and encourage other Mexicans to exercise their right to vote abroad.
In addition, several national and international election observers from Latin America, the U.S., Korea and Japan, were present on election day. The observers represented various U.S. immigration advocacy organizations, as well as universities, foreign institutions, and international bodies like the Organization of American States (OAS) and the United Nations (UN).
University of California (UCLA) professor Raul Hinojosa reassured: “What is seen is honorable, transparent and smooth. It is an incredible act of transnational civic solidarity by the Mexican people; many of them have never gone to the United States, but they are here laboring to show and count the voice and vote of the immigrant from the other side who has no other way of self-expression. The migrant vote is an expansion of democracy to the other side, it is increasing the respect for the human rights of those in another country.”
The following table shows the results from absentee votes received for the Mexico City Mayoral race according to PREP.
|Claudia Sheinbaum Pardo (PT-Morena-Encuentro Social)||10,957 votes|
|Maria Alejandra Barrales Magdaleno (PAN-PRD-Movimiento Ciudadano [Citizen Movement])||5,694 votes|
|Mikel Andoni Arriola Peñalosa (PRI)||2,257 votes|
|Mariana Boy Tamborell (PVEM)||578 votes|
|Marco Antonio Ignacio Rascon Cordova (Humanista [Humanist])||529 votes|
|Lorena Osornio Elizondo (independent nomination)||444 votes|
|Purificación Carpinteyro Calderon (Nueva Alianza [New Alliance])||145 votes|
|Unregistered nominations||174 votes|
|Null votes||63 votes|