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MEXICO READY FOR WOMAN PRESIDENT?


Josefina Vazquez Mota, candidate for the PAN’s nomination for President of Mexico
MEXICO CITY, Mexico - Yucatan state Gov. Ivonne Ortega currently the only woman among Mexico's 32 governors once said, Mexico is ready to have a female president and did not rule out the possibility that her Institutional Revolutionary Party, or PRI, will one day nominate a woman for the top spot.
"Mexicans have evolved and they now put greater value on ability than gender," she said
  • On the same token, a congresswoman who would be the first woman to seek a major party nomination for Mexico's presidency is ‘absolutely certain' her country is ready for a female leader, she said on Monday.
  • Josefina Vazquez Mota said her possible candidacy, yet to be declared, has met a lot of enthusiasm around the country and is buoyed by other women leaders of Latin American countries, as well as young voters who grew up with modern notions about women.
  • Women currently lead Brazil, Latin America's largest country, Argentina and Costa Rica.
  • "We are hard workers, we take great responsibility for our decisions...we have won many campaigns for many men, and the moment has come to win campaigns for ourselves " Vazquez told reporters.
The 50-year-old federal representative, a member of President Felipe Calderon's conservative National Action Party, or PAN, has an uphill battle to win the nomination, let alone the presidency.
While Calderon has yet to throw his support in a field of PAN candidates, most pundits say he is backing his current Treasury Secretary Ernesto Cordero.
  • After nearly 12 years in power, the PAN enters the campaign season for the July 2011 presidential election at a distinct disadvantage, with voters weary of a bloody crackdown on organised crime and saying the PAN has changed little in Mexico in more than a decade in power.
  • State of Mexico Governor Enrique Pena Nieto, a member of Institutional Revolutionary Party that ruled Mexico for 71 years, has a substantial lead in early presidential polls in his party's quest to regain the presidency it lost in 2000.
  • Vazquez noted a year before the 2006 campaign, polls showed former Mexico City Mayor Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador well ahead. He ultimately lost to Calderon in a photo finish he still disputes.
  • On the other hand, Vazquez, whose district is also in the state of Mexico surrounding Mexico City, is pointing to polls that show her ascent as a candidate within her party, gaining nearly 20 points in the last six months and tying or leading Senator Santiago Creel, who lost the PAN nomination to Calderon in 2006.
Vazquez said she expects the process for choosing a PAN candidate will be open and fair, regardless of who the president supports.
Vazquez, who is a former speaker of the lower house of congress part of the PAN leadership, also served as secretary of public education under Calderon.
Source: Agency
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