Mexico: The Left’s Victory Leaves the Church Perplexed

Source: FSSPX News

Episcopal Conference of Mexico

After the electoral triumph of the left-wing candidate who has just become the first female President of the United Mexican States, many are concerned about the progressive program of the woman who will hold the reins of power for the next six years.

“We respectfully congratulate Claudia Sheinbaum on her victory at the polls, making her the President-Elect of the United Mexican States for the 2024-2030 period. [...] We remind all the winners of this electoral vote that, when they take office, they will be doing so for everyone: they will govern for all Mexicans, whether they voted for them or not,” Zenit reports, citing a message from Mexican bishops.

The cautious tone of the press release published by the Mexican episcopate on June 3, 2024, a few hours after the official results of the presidential vote held the day before, says a lot about the perplexity of the Church of Mexico faced with the choice of voters.

In this country made up of 80% Catholics, of 128 million inhabitants, Le Monde reports: “The term ‘tsunami’ was used throughout the Mexican press on Monday, June 3, to describe the victory of the National Regeneration Movement (Morena), the political party founded just 10 years ago by President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador (known as "AMLO") and the woman who will succeed him in October, Claudia Sheinbaum, elected on Sunday with 59.3% of the vote.”

“I will not disappoint you,” BFMTV quotes the promise of the left-wing candidate who is making history as the first female President of Mexico and who is taking on the challenge of containing the violence of drug trafficking and promoting the rights of women.

 As CNA reports, “her paternal grandparents are Ashkenazi Jews who emigrated from Lithuania to Mexico in the 1920s. The parents of her mother, Annie Pardo, are Sephardic Jews who arrived from Bulgaria in the 1940s, fleeing Nazi persecution. In a statement to the Spanish edition of The New York Times in 2020, Sheinbaum referred to her distance from Jewish religious practices: ‘Of course I know where I come from, but my parents were always atheists … I never belonged to the Jewish community and we grew up somewhat distanced from that.’”

This very clear distancing from the religion allows her to take up the progressive program of the party founded by AMLO, which “promotes, among other things, abortion and gender ideology.” CNA explains that during AMLO’s term of office, abortion was decriminalized up to 12 or even 13 weeks of pregnancy in several Mexican States.

“On May 17, 2019, five months after taking office, López Obrador instituted what he called the ‘national day for the fight against homophobia, lesbophobia, transphobia, and biphobia.’” And one year later, he “encouraged the legal recognition of ‘the name and gender’ of a child or adolescent who identifies as ‘trans.’” Sheinbaum is following the same path.

“At the beginning of her campaign, the candidate announced 100 commitments that she would fulfill if elected president, including that she would guarantee ‘access to health for women throughout their life cycle, especially with regards to sexual and reproductive health,’” CNA quotes. “On Dec. 12, 2023, the feast day of Our Lady of Guadalupe, Sheinbaum shared on X an image along with commentary stating her strong desire ‘to strengthen the rights of sexually diverse people,’” the same website continues.

MORENA and its allies obtained more than two thirds of the seats in the Chamber of Deputies and almost the same result in the Chamber of Senators. “This means that checks and balances are greatly weakened and that the government will be able to pass all constitutional reforms without having to negotiate with the opposition,” Azul Aguilar, political science professor at the Jesuit University of Guadalajara, says in Le Monde.

But the new President knows that on her way she will encounter a Catholic Church that is still powerful, if she want to enshrine abortion in the Mexican Constitution as she wishes. One of her advisers, Olga Sánchez Cordero, former Secretary of the Interior, recognizes that: “Today is perhaps not the most opportune moment.”

Mexican Catholics can still console themselves: “The country's new electoral map on the day after the election shows the virtual disappearance of the opposition and almost complete left-wing dominance,” Le Monde states. It is a party that is the direct heir of the National Revolutionary Party which massacred the Cristeros starting in 1929.