Mexico's Political Earthquake: The 2018 Elections, Democracy, and Binational Relations

On July 1, 2018, Mexican leftist leader Andrés Manuel López Obrador (AMLO) won the presidency with a commanding 53% of the popular vote. He polled 31 percentage points ahead of his nearest competitor in a four-candidate race, carried 31 of 32 states, and propelled his new Movement for National Regeneration party (MORENA), in alliance with two smaller parties, to outright majorities in both houses of Congress.

AMLO's mandate is the largest in 36 years, surpassing the three previous presidents since the start of Mexico’s fully competitive democracy in 2000 and the final two presidents under dominant party rule. As of December 1, 2018, the world’s fifth most populous democracy and largest Spanish-speaking country will be led by a nationalistic, left-leaning political figure.

What caused this political earthquake? How might AMLO address Mexico’s chronic problems including poverty, political corruption, and soaring violence, and what does his victory mean for the future of U.S.-Mexico relations over trade, immigration, and illegal drug trafficking?

A binational group of leading experts will address these questions in a full-day conference.

Keynote Address

The annual Austin Lecture on Contemporary Mexico will be delivered by Denise Dresser as the conference's keynote address, on Thursday, September 27, 2018, at 5:00 p.m. at the Texas Union Building's Santa Rita Room, UNB 3.502.

For more information, contact Paloma Díaz.

To RSVP and receive updates, visit this event on Facebook at Mexico's Political Earthquake.

Co-sponsored by the Robert Strauss Center for International Security and Law and the C.B. Smith Sr. Centennial Chair, #1 in US–Mexico Relations

Friday, September 28, 2018 at 9:00am to 5:00pm

Texas Union Building (UNB), Santa Rita Room, UNB 3.502
2247 Guadalupe, Austin, Texas 78705

Event Type

Arts & Humanities, Business & Economy, Policy & Law


College of Liberal Arts, LBJ School of Public Affairs

Target Audience

Students, Faculty, Alumni, General Public



Free and open to the public

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