On Sunday, Andrés Manuel López Obrador became the first leftist President of Mexico. The 64-year-old former Mexico City mayor is anticipated to strongly ignite nationalism in the country. His promises of fighting violence and ending corruption earned him a landslide victory.
López Obrador vowed to put an end to inequality, improve pay and welfare spending and implement strict measures on budget. He has turned away from the standard trappings of office and said that he intends to live in his own home, convert the official residence into an arts center, sell the presidential plane and take a pay cut.
“I’m very aware of my historical responsibility,” López Obrador told multitudes of loyal followers in Mexico City’s central square. “I don’t want to go into history as a bad president. Now we are going to transform Mexico.”
He also pledged to stop widespread corruption. “Whoever it is will be punished, I include comrades, officials, friends and family members,” López Obrador said Sunday. “A good judge begins at home.” He also told his supporters last week that there will be no dictatorship contrary to accusations of authoritarianism.
López Obrador seeks to reduce the country’s economic dependence on the United States. He intends to persuade President Donald Trump to assist in the development of Mexico and Central America in order to deflate the growing number of illegal immigrants in the U.S.
On Sunday night, President Trump congratulated the newly elect president via tweeter saying, “There is much to be done that will benefit both the United States and Mexico!” The first communication between López Obrador and the White House will happen through a phone call on Monday.
Triumphant supporters gathered in Mexico City’s Zocalo, honking their horns to the tune of “Viva Mexico!” and waving Mexican flags. Thousands showed up to heed López Obrador’s request to gather in the sprawling main square known as Zocalo, with many dancing to mariachi music.
“We have witnessed today a very profound reshaping of the country’s political map,” Goldman Sachs economist Alberto Ramos told Reuters. “The balance of power at the federal and local levels has definitely shifted to the left, with unclear implications for the near-term policy direction.”