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New polls show Institutional Revolutionary Party presidential nominee Enrique Peña Nieto holding a big lead despite his missteps last month. The missteps included not being name able to name three books that have marked his life and not having an accurate knowledge of basic food prices. Columnist Leo Zuckermann says several factors may have contributed to his keeping his large lead:
1. Opponents were not able to capitalize on his missteps because negative ad campaigns are not allowed under federal campaign rules
2. The voting public already knew Peña Nieto was not an erudite candidate, and therefore was willing to forgive mistakes in this area (Mexicans read, on average, only a book or two year). Zuckermann even wrote that for most voters, such mistakes "aren't worth a cucumber."
Previous mention in MexicoPerspective on how issue was not likely to seriously damage Peña Nieto
3. Peña Nieto, like Ronald Reagan, is a Teflon candidate; bad things bounce off him.
Zuckermann's column, in Frontera (PDF)
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Presidential candidate Andrés Manuel López Obrador visited Vicente Guerrero in southern Baja California on Tuesday and said the fact that the Democratic Revolution Party's Baja California chapter does not have a leader should not affect his presidential campaign. López Obrador met with agricultural workers, many of whom come from other states. Vicente Guerrero is part of the municipality of Ensenada.
López Obrador and front-runner Enrique Peña Nieto of the Institutional Revolutionary Party are engaged in what are called pre-campaign activities: they can hold rallies, but not make broadcast advertisements until next month. On Feb. 5, National Action Party members will vote for their nominee; if there is no clear winner, a runoff will be held.