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Claudia Casas lost her bid to win the Citizens Movement's "best-loser" seat in the Baja California state legislature after the party did not back her before the regional federal electoral tribunal in Guadalajara. Casas, who has acted in low-budget drug-trafficking films, told Frontera newspaper she was upset because votes for her wound up being annulled by the state electoral tribunal, whose decision to award the seat to to Juan Manuel Molina García of Mexicali District 1 was upheld unanimously.
On Election Day, July 7, it appeared that Molina García had won the seat by having the best percentage showing in a district for the Citizens Movement, but as more precincts in Casas' Tijuana District 13 were counted during the week Casas wound up ahead. At one point she had 13.5% in her district to Molina García's 11.4%; he protested that she had been given many phantom votes by the state electoral agency, whose impartiality came under fire following the elections. The state electoral tribunal later reduced her percentage to 10.7%.
Frontera said the Citizens Movement did not recognize Casas nor her lawyer as representing it before the tribunal, which then ruled in favor of Molina García. Molina García formerly represented the National Action Party in the state legislature; if he voted with the National Action Party's coalition in the new legislature, it would have a working majority.
Story, Frontera (PDF). Political page, Frontera (PDF). The 90-page ruling (PDF).
Citizens Movement "best-loser" vote table.
Update, Sept. 6: Citizens Movement state President Job Montoya says the party never abandoned Casas. Story, Frontera (PDF).
The Baja California Electoral Tribunal, in a 2-1 ruling, gave the Citizens Movement at-large seat in the state legislature for its best losing candidate to Juan Manuel Molina García of Mexicali, reversing an electoral tribunal decision to award the post to Claudia Casas, who has performed in low-budget drug-trafficking films.
Molina formerly served as a state legislator for the National Action Party.
The tribunal said Casas was given votes she did not receive, and said there were irregularities in some voting precincts. Votes in seven precincts were thrown out, two because there were only two precinct officials and five because the precinct officials were not listed on voter rolls.
Update, Aug. 22: Casas challenges state electoral tribunal ruling before regional federal electoral tribunal. Story, El Mexicano (PDF).
|Citizens Movement candidate||Total Votes after ruling||% of total votes||Total votes before ruling||% of total votes|
|Juan Manuel Molina García, District 1||3,881||11.4%||3,881||11.4%|
|Claudia Casas, District 16||5,088||10.7%||6,538||13.5%|