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National Action Party congressional leader Josefina Vázquez Mota said Saturday that she would be taking leave from her Chamber of Deputies post Aug. 31 to run for the PAN presidential nomination.
Story, El Universal.
She and former Interior Minister Santiago Creel have been running neck-and-neck in polls for the PAN nomination. Surveys also show both badly trailing Mexico state Gov. Enrique Peña Nieto in the 2012 general election.
The above billboard expressing Vázquez Mota's love for Mexico and promoting her state of the Chamber of Deputies address was on Avenida Cuauhtémoc in Tijuana near the airport.
In an interview in the August issue of Poder magazine, analyst Luis Rubio (right) said Vázquez Mota is the only PAN candidate who stands a chance in the general election. "She is the only one who can change and position herself away from (President Felipe) Calderón and (former President Vicente) Fox, because those two administrations are seen in Mexico, and out, as disasters," Rubio said.
According to this theory, Creel's appearance with Fox last week should not help him. Creel was Fox's preferred candidate for the PAN presidential nomination six years ago, but was beaten by Calderón.
Rubio also said that whoever wins, there will be major change, because what the Calderón administration is doing is not working. He said Calderón has not had a strategy for his relations with the United States nor much of a strategy for anything. He said much of U.S.-Mexican relations in the next administration will depend more on the will of the U.S. people than on whoever is elected U.S. president next year.
Vázquez Mota told El Universal on Saturday that Mexico is ready to be governed by a woman. "The time has come for women to lead government, Michoacán is an example," she said. Calderón's sister, Luisa María Calderón, is running for governor of Michoacán state and at an event registering her gubernatorial candidacy met Saturday with PAN presidential candidates Alonso Lujambio, Ernesto Cordero, Vázquez Mota and Emilio González. Lujambio is education minister; Cordero is finance minister and the presumed favorite of Felipe Calderón; and González is governor of Jalisco. Story, El Universal, in Frontera.
Earlier this month, the nation was plastered with billboards heralding Vázquez Mota's state of the Chamber of Deputies address, which took place Aug. 14. The billboards, funded largely by fellow PAN deputies, presumably skated by campaign law because they were promoting her address and not her presidential candidacy. Creel took leave from the Senate last month and urged other PAN presidential hopefuls to do the same; they replied that they would do so in their own good time. The billboard advertising was said to cost 5.3 million pesos ($431,000).