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Friday, Sept. 20, 2013

Mexican Congress modifies law allowing independent candidacies to require states and Mexico City to change their constitutions and laws to allow such candidacies

Zacatecas state already had changed its laws, and an independent candidate won a mayor's race there on July 7; he took office Sept. 15, as did the openly gay mayor of Fresnillo

raul de luna         The Mexican Congress, which in 2011 voted to change the Mexican Constitution to allow independent candidates to run for office, has now voted to require states and Mexico City to change their constitutions and laws to allow such candidacies.

         Zacatecas' legislature had changed its laws in 2012 to allow independent candidacies, and on July 7, independent candidate Raúl de Luna Tovar won election as mayor of General Enrique Estrada, a municipality of nearly 6,000. De Luna Tovar, 45, had previously served as mayor from 2007-2010 representing the National Action Party. He told Excélsior columnist Leo Zuckermann that when the PAN would not allow him to register as a candidate for the party's mayoral nomination, he went independent, easily gathering the 15% of the municipality's electorate. He defeated the candidate on a PAN-Democratic Revolution Party alliance 1,378 to 1,110; there was a 70% turnout. De Luna Tovar won 44.3 of the 3,110 votes.

          He raised 105,000 pesos ($8,233) for campaign expenses, half of which may be reimbursed by electoral authorities. His campaign logo was his first initial placed within a moon (Luna means moon). He used a maroon color to distinguish himself from the colors of other parties.

           De Luna Tovar took office Sunday (Sept. 15), succeeding an Institutional Revolutionary Party mayor. He was one of 58 mayors elected July 7 in Zacatecas: one of them, Benjamín Medrano Quesada of the Institutional Revolutionary Party, now mayor of Fresnillo, is openly gay.

April 2011: Senate vote allowing independent candidacies.
May 2011: Jorge Castañeda on independent candidacies.