Saturday, September 15, 2007

Letter to the Editor, NYT (unpublished)

To the Editor,

Re "Hobbling Mexico's Democracy" (editorial, Sept. 13): I strongly disagree with your assessment of Mexico's Federal Electoral Institute (IFE in Spanish). Not only did the organism ignore illegal campaign advertising, as you note, but it did nothing to prevent (or later punish) then-President Vicente Fox's unconstitutional participation in Felipe Calderon's campaign. Furthermore, even the IFE admitted that electoral fraud had occurred, that ballots had been fixed or miscounted -- the only response was that it wasn't enough to affect the results. How that was determined remains unclear.

A common graffiti I saw last year in Oaxaca when I was reporting on the Mexican election comes to mind: IFE = Instituto de Fraude Electoral.

Daniel Nemser

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