Mexico 2018 Election Overview

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Mexico will hold its general election on July 1, 2018. At the federal level, Mexicans will elect a new president, 500 members of the Chamber of Deputies and 128 members to the Senate, in addition to the thousands of state and municipal positions up for election. In total, more than 3,000 elected positions are up for grabs, making the 2018 election unprecedented in its scope and impact on Mexico’s political landscape. The outcome of this election will in turn determine the political coalition possibilities that will provide both political governance and public policy options for the country. Equally important, the race for president is shaping up to be very competitive. All of the four major political parties are gearing up to designate their candidates by the end of this year. Most of them are doing so in coalition with the rest of the small parties.

The 2018 presidential election is significant for several reasons. First, it stands to test the country’s democratic values, especially after the return of the PRI in 2012 — a party that until 2000 held a 70-year grip on government. There are important signs that the country’s National Electoral Institute, which organizes all elections and adjudicates result disputes, is under considerable stress. Second, this election will test the strength of Mexico’s 30-year tradition of addressing public policy issues by consensus, as parties on the left — Movimiento de Regeneración Nacional (National Regeneration Movement, MORENA), the Partido de la Revolución Democrática (Democratic Revolutionary Party, PRD) and Movimiento Ciudadano (Citizen Movement, MC) — and on the right — the Partido de Acción Nacional (National Action Party, PAN), the Partido Revolucionario Institucional (The Institutional Revolutionary Party, PRI) and Partido Nueva Alianza (New Alliance Party, PANAL) — seek to redefine the role of the government and free markets in areas such as economic development, trade, security and the rule of law, and energy while tackling other key problems that have plagued the country for decades, including poverty, inequality and uneven wage distribution. Finally, the election outcome will show whether voters want a more forceful response from their leader to President Donald Trump’s sharp shift in tone toward Mexico.


Number of Seats up for Election


1    President
300   Chamber of Deputies (Single-Member District)
200   Chamber of Deputies (Proportional Representation)
64   Senate (Single-Member District)
32   Senate (Proportional Representation)
32   Senate (Primary Minority)
629   Total


State and Municipal

8    Governorships
1   Head of Government (Mexico City)
585   Municipal Chambers of Deputies (Single-Member District)
387   Municipal Chambers of Deputies (Proportional Representation)
1,596   Town Council Members
24   Municipal Judges
16    Mayors
96    Council Members (Single-Member District)
64    Council Members (Proportional Representation)
2,777   Total