The president of Mexico, Andrés Manuel López Obrador, accused the United States Department of State on Tuesday of meddling in his affairs after comments by officials about the protests in Mexico City against an electoral reform promoted by the ruling party.
Tens of thousands of Mexicans took to the streets on Sunday to protest against measures promoted by López Obrador to reduce the budget and decimate the country’s electoral authority, amid opposition complaints that it is a threat to democracy.
State Department officials welcomed what they described as a political debate around electoral reform, but López Obrador said that the department always “intrudes in matters that do not correspond to it.”
On Monday, State Department spokesman Ned Price issued a statement saying that a “great debate on electoral reforms” reflected Mexico’s “vibrant democracy.”
“We believe that an independent and well-resourced electoral system and respect for judicial independence support a healthy democracy,” Price said.
The protest, however, did not represent a political debate for the Mexican president, and he reacted in his daily press conference by saying that Washington’s comments reflected a “bad habit” and were “very contrary” to the messages of President Joe Biden.
On Monday, López Obrador described the protesters as conservatives who are against his political project and called them “undemocratic.”
“They don’t care about democracy, but what they want is for the dominance of an oligarchy to continue, a government of the rich,” López Obrador said.
Prior to Price’s statement, US Assistant Secretary of State for the Western Hemisphere Brian A. Nichols said in a Twitter message that Mexico was seeing a great debate over electoral reforms that “test the independence of electoral institutions.” and judicial”.
“The United States supports independent electoral institutions that have the resources to strengthen democratic processes and the rule of law,” Nichols added.
[Con información de AP y Reuters]