Photo: PRI Presidential Candidate Enrique Peña Nieto
Enrique Peña Nieto’s presidential candidacy for Mexico’s Institutional Revolutionary Party, or PRI, has been officially approved, the party’s National Internal Procedures Commission, or CNPI, said.
The politician’s candidacy could not be officially confirmed before Saturday under Federal Electoral Institute, or IFE, rules.
“I know how to accept the criticism, to keep moving forward. It’s true, I may not remember the name of an author, but what I don’t forget is the violence, the despair and the poverty being experienced in Mexico,” Peña Nieto said.
“What I don’t forget is the economic stagnation, the lack of opportunity from which our country is suffering,” the politician told supporters on Saturday.
Peña Nieto, who polls show is the favorite to win Mexico’s July 2012 presidential election, had to defend himself earlier this month after becoming the butt of jokes for being unable to identify the authors and titles of several books.
The goal is to create “a Mexico of peace and tranquility, a country with order and growth, a nation of opportunity,” Peña Nieto told hundreds of cheering supporters.
The politician vowed to win next year’s election “in a clear and resounding” manner.
The 45-year-old Peña Nieto, a former governor of Mexico state, has said he wants to promote ideas and compromise to win the backing of Mexicans.
The PRI, which governed Mexico from 1929 to 2000, is trying to regain the presidency after two straight losses.
Peña Nieto announced his bid for the PRI’s presidential nomination on Sept. 20, a few days after ending his term as governor of Mexico state, which surrounds the Federal District and forms part of the Mexico City metropolitan area.
The former governor was given a clear path to the nomination in November, when Sen. Manlio Fabio Beltrones, the only other candidate vying to head the ticket in the 2012 elections, withdrew from the race.
Mexico will hold its presidential election on July 1, 2012, electing a successor to President Felipe Calderon of the PAN.
Peña Nieto will be the standard-bearer of the Compromiso por Mexico coalition formed by the PRI, the Mexican Green Party, or PVEM, and the New Alliance Party, or PANAL.
Former Mexico City Mayor Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador is awaiting formal confirmation of his candidacy for the alliance formed by the leftist Party of the Democratic Revolution, or PRD, the Workers Party, or PT, and the Movimiento Ciudadano.
The conservative National Action Party, or PAN, which is going it alone in the election, has not decided on a candidate yet.
Josefina Vazquez Mota, Santiago Creel and Ernesto Cordero have met all the requirements to compete for the PAN’s nomination, the National Elections Commission, or CNE, said Saturday.
Luis Eduardo Paredes Moctezuma and Javier Livas Cantu did not meet the requirements, CNE chairman Jose Espina von Roehrich said.
Some 80 million Mexicans will be eligible to vote for a new president, 628 legislators and thousands of other officials in next year’s general elections.