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8/1 Tijuana, Mexico: Updates on Mayoral Election

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  • SIUHIN@aol.com
    Tijuana, Mexico Holding Mayoral Election By ARTURO SALINAS .c The Associated Press TIJUANA, Mexico (AP) - The ruling party of Mexican President Vicente Fox
    Message 1 of 1 , Aug 1, 2004
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      Tijuana, Mexico Holding Mayoral Election
      .c The Associated Press

      TIJUANA, Mexico (AP) - The ruling party of Mexican President Vicente Fox
      sought to keep its hold on the border city of Tijuana in voting Sunday and beat
      back another challenge in a southern state viewed as an early presidential

      Jorge Ramos, the mayoral candidate in Tijuana for Fox's National Action
      Party, or PAN, was favored to win in the pre-election polls over Jorge Hank Rhon,
      running for the opposition Institutional Revolutionary Party, or PRI.

      Hank Rhon poured some of his reported $500 million net worth into the
      election in northern Baja California state and enjoys the backing of PRI President
      Roberto Madrazo, who wants to run for president in 2006.

      Fox's party has held both the state's governorship and the mayorship in
      Tijuana since 1989, the year when Baja California state became the first to elect a
      governor who was not from the PRI. The PRI ruled the country from 1929 to
      2000 when Fox won the presidency.

      Hank Rhon, the son of the late PRI power broker Carlos Hank Gonzalez, is the
      father of 18 children and owns hundreds of animals at a private zoo near his
      Tijuana racetrack.

      In 1988, two of his employees were convicted of killing a Tijuana journalist
      who reported on corruption for the crusading weekly Zeta.

      Madrazo, head of the PRI, hoped to use the governor's election in the
      southern state of Oaxaca as a springboard for a presidential run. Oaxaca has been a
      stronghold both for Madrazo in particular and for his Institutional
      Revolutionary Party as a whole.

      Because of the state's key role for the PRI, the governor's race here
      sometimes looks more like an early presidential primary.

      Pre-election polls showed one of Madrazo's key election tacticians, former
      federal Sen. Ulises Ruiz, virtually tied with opposition candidate Gabino Cue in

      As polls closed, officials were reporting a healthy turnout and relatively
      few irregularities.

      Oaxaca ``is a must-win state for Madrazo,'' said George Grayson, a Mexico
      expert at the College of William & Mary in Williamsburg, Va.

      Until recently, Mexico had no ``must-win'' states. For six decades, every
      state election went to the PRI, by fair means or foul. That started to change
      with National Action won Baja California in 1989.

      ``If the PRI loses (in Oaxaca), it's better than 50-50 that Madrazo does not
      make it'' to the candidacy in 2006, said Mexican political scientist Federico

      In a third election Sunday, an exit poll reported by Mexico's leading
      television network, Televisa, indicated that, as expected, the National Action had
      held onto the governorship in north-central state of Aguascalientes.

      The poll by Consulta Mitofsky gave National Action's Luis Armando Reynoso
      Femat a commanding lead over the PRI's Oscar Lopez Velarde.

      Oaxaca's capital is the colonial jewel, Oaxaca city. Hundreds of thousands of
      foreigners visit its Pacific beaches, such as Huatulco.

      08/01/04 21:39 EDT

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