Wednesday, February 29, 2012

IFE's Lorenzo Córdova calls for calm on opinion polls

Lorenzo Córdova Vianello, one of the nine councilors of Mexico's federal electoral institute, called for political actors - candidates, public servants - to be "responsible" in their use of public opinion polls ahead of Mexico's 2012 election, and not "contaminate" the electoral enviroment.

I think that can safely be taken as a finger pointing at Felipe Calderón, who happened to display, proud as a rooster, a poll that showed PAN's candidate trailing by only a few percentage points. No other poll - none - has showed anything remotely close to these figures.

Córdova also drew attention to the "irresponsibility" of politicians pointing to dubious and made-to-fit polls, an increasing problem in Mexico. All parties should feel this criticism sting a bit.

(On another note: Lorenzo Córdova is a man to keep in mind for future higher offices. I have been reading much of his work recently, and most of it is very brilliant stuff. I don't think being an IFE councilor - as important and prestigious as that job is - will be the zenith of his career.)


  1. Since when is a politican to be responsible? For tweeking the numbers or even inventing an opinion poll to work in their favor! Good God, I hope they don´t start that crap in the good old USA. We are talking FAIR elections, not by influencing the uninformed, uneducated and plain dumb voters who may get confused and just vote for who ever everyone else is voting for.

  2. It's not a crime in a democracy to reveal the findings in polls, but then Mexico is new to freedom of expression. Silent polling is not superior to open discussions about polls. The IFE should also be welcome to make its decisions official. Its official are free to make some statements (hopefully statements that are fair) even if they only make them after they no longer benefit the PRI. Why didn't this individual Lorenzo Cordova care when all polls favored the PRI? GEA-IPSA confirms the trend towards a more competitive race. During the rule of the PRI, I doubt such a poll would have been requested, would have existed, or would have been made public. I'd rather hear more polls from all sides, more statements by individual IFE members, less bias from individuals selected as a compromise to parties and other beneficiaries of corporatist states, and the survival of electoral competition and criticisms from all towards all.

    Not being part of the PRI, I don't agree with the attitude of looking down at voters and limiting their information. If it wasn't a problem when the PRI was ahead, it should not be a problem now.

    Nevertheless, I suspect many sources will be talking and hoping to drag this out and influence as many people as possible for the benefit or detriment of one political position or another. Power, politics, and money will bring out the dramatizations, slick talkers, and persuaders every time.