Mexico's leftist Party of the Democratic Revolution (PRD) announced this week that it will hold a Conference on the Defense of Energy Sovereignty from October 24 to 27. The PRD will disseminate information explaining its opposition to President Enrique Peña Nieto’s plans for energy reform, which it believes will lead to the privatization of Mexico’s oil industry.
Addressing tens of thousands of supporters in Mexico City on Sunday, the PRD’s two-time presidential candidate Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador announced an unrelated campaign of non-violent civil disobedience after Peña Nieto ignored his calls for a national referendum on energy reform.
The reformers have the upper hand in government: Peña Nieto's centrist Institutional Revolutionary Party (PRI) holds majorities in both chambers of Congress and the energy reforms are supported by the conservative National Action Party (PAN). The leftist PRD controls only about 20% of each house.
The tri-partisan Pact for Mexico signed after Peña Nieto’s inauguration last year has been stretched to breaking point by the PRI’s most recent proposals. Of all the president’s reform agenda, it appears that his plans for tax and energy reform will prove the most unpopular and difficult to pass.
Excerpted from Duncan Tucker's The Tequila Files blog, 10 Oct 2013, and other news reports. Photo from http://en.presidencia.gob.mx/