Sunday, August 06, 2006

Mexico City: AMLO, "not obsessed with power - it's the principle."

Today in the Zócalo in Mexico City, Andrés Manuel López Obrador told a relatively small crowd that "I am not obsessed with power." He vowed to carry on the encampment in the city's center to defend "principles". He accused the PAN of trying to impose a "right-wing" government on the people.

Mark in Mexico Mexico City AMLO greets his followers as he arrives in the Zócalo 8 Aug 2006
AMLO arrives at the Zócalo

The crowd was estimated by Mexico City officials to be only about 23,000 people. The city officials, all from the PRD, have been notorious for vastly overestimating the crowd sizes for all of AMLO various protests, marches, tent cities and the like. So I would suppose that the actual crowd size was about half of what they claimed it to be. To be fair, God has not been looking too favorably on AMLO and his followers of late. They have been getting a daily soaking from torrential downpours and hail storms. Yesterday, parts of Mexico City were under 2 feet of water.

Regardless of the weather, even if the crowd was, indeed, 23,000 strong, that's pretty weak.

AMLO also reminded his followers to constantly apologize to the city's citizens whose lives they are making miserable and to try to convince the enraged citizenry that the sacrifices imposed upon them by AMLO and his followers "are for the good of the country".

He vowed to carry on with the tent city in the downtown. However, contrary to fears, he did not call for an escalation of the protests. Earlier in the week, some of his spokespersons were threatening to shut down the country's airports. These threats did lead to some problems at the airports in Guadalahara and Acapulco.

It just might be that AMLO and his handlers are beginning to see that this is a fight he is destined to lose politically, judicially and in the opinion of the public.

Maybe. But remember, he hasn't paid his light bill for 12 years.

UPDATE: AMLO has announced that he will give his next speech tomorrow in front of the election magistrates' headquarters. This should not be considered an escalation because his followers have been camped around the election commission for a couple of weeks. There is a contingent of federal troops inside the magistrates' building.

AMLO said that he would not accept the "10% solution" that the election commission magistrates handed down yesterday. He said that he would ask the judges to reconsider their decision and he would not settle for anything less than a 100% recount. Remember, however, that he has consistantly stated that, if that recount was not in his favor, he would not accept the 100% recount either.

Before his speech, PRD officials vowed to follow President Fox around through all of his public appearances. Well, that's OK. President Fox will see that they are not mistreated.

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