This Friday, Andrés Manuel López Obrador (AMLO) registered, in three separate events, with the three parties that are carrying his candidacy as presidential candidate in 2012. He even color coordinated his ties: Yellow for PRD, orange for Movimiento Ciudadano, and red for the Workers Party (PT).
Yet the three events were markedly different. For the PRD event, the party to which AMLO technically still belongs - though the past years he has been busy campaigning for its opponents on the left - the ambiance was quite austere. Reportedly AMLO had asked for a low-key event, and in any case, there were significant absences - not Ebrard or Cárdenas, or Jesús Ortega or Héctor Bautista, heads of NI and ADN respectively, two major party factions long critical of AMLO's influence over and effects upon the PRD. Nor Armando Ríos Piter and Carlos Navarrete, heads of the PRD's legislative groups.
And no wonder - just days ago it became clear that NI and ADN were practically excluded from his campaign team, which includes very few people from PRD in general. It read essentially as a who-is-who from 2006, leaving the team from the last presidential contest virtually intact.
AMLO now called for unity - hardly a moment too soon, having been the biggest source of controversy, disunity, and internal fights for the past five years in the PRD. Party President Jesús Zambrano did his part, calling for "Viva López Obrador!" at the event, which was very much an act of protocol compared with the other two - MC and PT - with thousands of attendees, music, and general festivities. AMLO even showed up there with his entire family, four children and spouse Beatriz Gutiérrez Müller.
AMLO's love and peace, in short, does not appear to be extended toward his critics in the PRD.
In that sense, nothing appears to have changed.