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Monday, April 30, 2012

Mexico City mayor's race kicks off

cambio cover mexico city mayor's raceThe campaign for Mexico City mayor kicked off Sunday. The front runner is former Mexico City prosecutor Miguel Ángel Mancera of the Democratic Revolutionary Party, which has held the post since 1997. Far behind in second is Beatriz Paredes of the Institutional Revolutionary Party, a former governor of Tlaxcala state who lost to Marcelo Ebrard in 2006. In third is Isabel Miranda de Wallace, an anti-crime activist whose son was kidnapped and killed in 2005. Cambio magazine put their numbers at 50%, 32% and 16% respectively.
Miranda de Wallace's campaign was recently deflated when proceso la verdadera senora wallaceProceso magazine put her on its cover and said she had been arrested and jailed in 1998. She denied it, and went through the rigmarole of saying the booking photo was not of her, demonstrating to the media that her real height was several centimeters different from the height of the woman in the booking photo. But it was of her; she had been involved in a dispute in 1998 over billboards the city said her company, Showcase Publicidad, should not have put up. She and a large team of supporters went to the area in dispute, and she apparently cut cables to a crane the city was trying to use to remove the advertising. Proceso reported that her son Hugo Alberto Wallace also appeared to have been involved in the confrontation. Because the cutting of the cables could have caused the crane to fall on people below, she also was charged with illegal endangerment that could have caused death. She later was absolved in the case. Did this story merit cover treatment in Proceso? Even if not, her reaction to it seemed to reveal a serious flaw in her character.

alto al secuestro hugo alberto wallaceIn 2005, in an unrelated event, the son (pictured at right) was kidnapped and killed; she and a team she worked with tracked down the alleged kidnappers, but relatives of those accused in the kidnapping told Proceso said she illegally detained and tortured them to get confessions. Miranda de Wallace put up billboards across the city offering a reward to those who would help track down her son's killers, one of whom was arrested in Kentucky. She formed the group "Alto al Secuestro" (Stop Kidnapping) and pushed for federal victims' rights legislation. In 2010, Miranda de Wallace won Mexico's National Human Rights Prize. Story in Frontera (PDF).
Mexico City mayor's race story from January.

PAN names Miranda de Wallace candidate.