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Fernando Castro Trenti, the Institutional Revolutionary Party politician who lost this year's Baja California govenor's race to the National Action Party's Francisco Vega, was formally named Mexico's ambassador to Argentina on Wednesday.
Castro Trenti had taken leave from his congressional seat to run for governor and had said in his concession speech that he would be returning to the Chamber of Deputies.
However, PRI powers that be wanted to keep the man who was filling his seat, Adán David Ruiz Gutiérrez, in the post. It also may be making it easier for the PRI to pass President Enrique Peña Nieto's proposed measure to boost the value-added tax along the border without Castro Trenti in Congress; Castro Trenti has been a wizard at building coalitions to get legislation passed, but his Baja California constituents don't want to pay more taxes, even if all the tax boost would do would be to make the value added tax 16% nationwide; it is 11% along the border. The proposal made it through committee on Wednesday.
Story, El Mexicano (PDF). Jump.
Update, Oct. 23: Ruiz Gutiérrez voted for the bill.
Columnist Gilberto Lavenant, repeating what many others have reported, said it appears that Baja California politician Fernando Castro Trenti (right) will become Mexico's ambassador to Argentina. Castro Trenti, a member of the Institutional Revolutionary Party (PRI), lost the July 7 gubernatorial election to Francisco Vega of the National Action Party (PAN).
Afterward, Castro Trenti said he would be returning to his seat in the Chamber of Deputies, from which he took a leave of absence in February. However, Castro Trenti's replacement in the chamber was Adán David Ruiz Gutiérrez (left), a Mexicali man who has been a top aide to Carlos Salinas de Gortari (right) since 1991; Salinas, president from 1988-1994, is still quite a powerful man in Mexico. Ruiz, and by extension, Salinas, apparently do not want to give up the post, although the decision legally belongs to Castro Trenti. (Was the seat going to Ruiz part of what helped Castro Trenti be designated the gubernatorial candidate?)
Lavenant said some also see the hand of former Tijuana Mayor Jorge Hank Rhon, who had wanted the gubernatorial nomination to avenge his loss to the PAN's José Guadalupe Osuna Millán in the 2007 election, in the matter; observers say the distance between Tijuana and Buenos Aires should greatly reduce Castro Trenti's power in the state.
Lavenant's column in El Sol de Tijuana was titled "El Señor Embajador."