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Former Mexico City Mayor Andrés Manuel López Obrador's Morena Party is urging Mexicans to sign up to become members of the political organization on Saturday. In Tijuana, a full-page ad published in El Mexicano asked people to come to the municipal auditorium to register beginning at 8 a.m.
López Obrador came in second in both the 2006 and 2012 presidential elections, running on a left-of-center ticket anchored by the Democratic Revolution Party, or PRD. López Obrador and the PRD have had a series of conflicts, and he is trying to outflank it for coming elections. López Obrador did not concede defeat in either 2006 or 2012.
Morena had been formed as an organization, but not a party, before the 2012 elections in an attempt to boost López Obrador's candidacy, much as Vicente Fox formed the "Amigos de Fox" group before his successful 2000 run for the presidency.
When López Obrador announced he was going to form the party a year ago, analysts said it possibly could mean the extinction of the Citizens Movement and the Workers Party. Morena was unable to run candidates in this year's elections because it had not officially become a party yet.
Oct. 12 is also Día de la Raza in Mexico. It was named that to celebrate Mexico's mixed-race heritage in 1928. In the United States, the holiday is known as Columbus Day.
Full-page ad in El Mexicano (PDF).
May 2011 story mentioning formation of Morena.
September 2012: López Obrador says he is separating himself from PRD coalition, may form Morena political party.
January 2013: Morena registers to become a political party.
February 2013: Three-party coalition that backed López Obrador in 2012 presidential race splits three ways in 2013 Baja California gubernatorial election.