Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Is Juan Sabines a dark-horse PAN-PRD candidate for 2012?

Yesterday, Felipe Calderón went to the pro-business Council of the Americas yesterday, where he received the Gold Insigne award, its highest distinction.

Who accompanied him? His wife, his secretary of tourism - and Juan Sabines.

Juan Sabines, the governor of Chiapas, continues to baffle me. He is greatly criticized by many social organizations on the left, and has a rocky relationship with the party that had him elected (PRD), though he continues to rake in on a range of international awards for poverty fighting and environmental protection.

(he broke with his party in 2006 to immediately recognize Calderón's July 2 electoral victory)

In particular his backing of the UN's flagship emissions reduction/forest preservation program has attracted lots of attention internationally. I confess I still am withholding judgment on Sabines' government, as I am simply not familiar enough with them, and have not yet fully heard the other side.

But I have noted that mainstream Mexican newspapers have the last months continuously printed the press releases of the Chiapas government as if they were "news" stories - in particular Milenio, but notably also La Jornada. Their decision I think can be ascribed to, well, at times failing judgment on part of some copy editors. But for his part, Sabines is making a tremendous effort, albeit low level, to spread the achievements, real or not, of the Chiapas state government.

Sabines' term as governor is set to expire in 2012. I wonder if he has any higher ambitions, and even more if he has any friends in high places.

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