The Institutional Revolutionary Party, or PRI, appears to be the winner of nine of the 12 governorships up for grabs in Mexico over the weekend, but a coalition of conservatives and leftists may have stripped the party of power in Oaxaca, Puebla and Sinaloa states after 80 years, the Preliminary Electoral Results Program, or PREP, shows Monday.
Roberto Borge, candidate of the Institutional Revolutionary Party, PRI, for governor of the state of Quintana Roo, celebrates after preliminary resultsshowed he held a lead in the state elections in Chetumal, Mexico, Sunday, July 4, 2010. A mixed outcome in 15 state and local elections showed no party or political leader has earned the overwhelming faith of Mexicans, desperate to bring their country out of a quagmire of economic stagnation and relentless gang wars. At right is Borge's wife Mariana Zorrilla.
The PRI has broad leads in Chihuahua, Quintana Roo, Tamaulipas, Tlaxcala and Zacatecas states.
In Aguascalientes, the PRI has 49 percent of the vote to 44 percent for the controversial alliance between the conservative National Action Party, or PAN, and the leftist Party of the Democratic Revolution, or PRD, with 92 percent of the ballots counted.
The gubernatorial races are also tight in Durango, where the PRI garnered 49 percent of the vote to the PAN-PRD’s 46 percent; Hidalgo, where the PRI has a lead of 53 percent to 47 percent over the PAN-PRD; Sinaloa, which is going 52 percent for the PAN-PRD to the PRI’s 48 percent; and Veracruz, where the PRI is leading by a 45 percent to 40 percent margin.
The PAN-PRD alliance is winning in Oaxaca with a comfortable 53 percent to 45 percent margin and in Puebla by a 53 percent to 41 percent margin.
A Mexican federal police officer stands guard at the Jose Vasconselos school in Ciudad Victoria, Mexico. In addition to violence, the electoral campaignhas been punctuated by allegations of espionage, illegal use of public funds and the arrest of leftist gubernatorial candidate Gregorio Sanchez, a former Cancun mayor, on racketeering and drug smuggling charges.
All PREP results are as of 7:50 a.m., with more than 90 percent of the ballots counted in most states, election officials said.
The parties, however, have not accepted the results in many states, while all the parties have claimed victory in some states.
The PRI appears, based on the preliminary results, to have retained power in six states, including Tamaulipas, which has been plagued by drug-related violence and was the scene last Monday of the killings of the party’s gubernatorial candidate, Rodolfo Torre Cantu, and four other people.
Torre Cantu was the standard-bearer of the Todos Tamaulipas (We Are All Tamaulipas) coalition made up of the PRI, the Green Party and the New Alliance Party.
Map of Mexico showing states where elections have taken place. Voting in nearly half the 31 states plus the capital's district was seen as an unofficialreferendum on President Felipe Calderon's tough crackdown on drug-related violence.
The slain candidate’s brother, Egidio, was selected to replace him in the gubernatorial race.
Egidio Torre, gubernatorial candidate for the Institutional Revolutionary Party (PRI) celebrates his victory in Ciudad Victoria, in the Mexican state ofTamaulipas, July 4, 2010. Mexico's main opposition party looked set to sweep elections for state governors, mayors and local deputies across a third of the country on Sunday, setting the stage for its push for the presidency in 2012. Egidio's brother Rodolfo Torre, the PRI front-runner for governor in Tamaulipas, and four aides were ambushed and killed by gunmen as they went to a campaign event, Mexico's highest-profile political murder in 16 years.
The PRI took the governorships of Aguascalientes and Tlaxcala from the PAN, and it grabbed the Zacatecas governorship from the PRD.
The vote count is continuing and is expected to be concluded Monday afternoon.
The alliance between the PAN and the PRD appears to have come out the winner in three states and to have lost in two others.
The two parties lost in Aguascalientes, Chihuahua, Quintana Roo, Tamaulipas, Tlaxcala and Veracruz, all states where they did not compete together.
A person wears a ribbon in honor of PRI's slain candidate Rodolfo Torre during elections in Ciudad Victoria in Tamaulipas state, Mexico, Sunday July 4,2010. A dozen Mexican states held elections Sunday after a campaign marred by assassinations and scandals that displayed drug cartels' power, including the killing of Rodolfo Torre, the PRI's candidate in Tamaulipas state, whose brother ran in his place and won.
The PRI currently governs 19 of Mexico’s 32 states and will remain in this position after the elections, having grabbed three governorships from its rivals, lost three and held on to six.
The states that held elections on Sunday have accounted for 60 percent of the more than 5,000 drug-related killings registered so far this year in Mexico, as well as 37 percent of the country’s population, the Excelsior newspaper reported Sunday.
The state elections are considered key in preparing for the 2012 presidential election.