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Business community in Borderland keeping close eye on Mexican presidential election

Business community in Borderland keeping close eye on Mexican presidential election

EL PASO, Texas - Mexicans will head to the polls on July 1 to elect a new president, and the stakes are high for those on both sides of the border.

Mexican media reports Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador is currently leading the polls. He's with the National Regeneration Movement Party (MORENA), which he created. Lopez Obrador finished in second place in the 2006 and 2012 Mexican presidential elections.

Ricardo Anaya is running for the National Action Party (PAN). Jose Antonio Meade is with the Institutional Revolutionary Party (PRI), that's the same party as current president Enrique Peña Nieto.

Jon Barela is the CEO of the Borderplex Alliance, an organization focused on economic development in the Borderland.

"The business community in the Borderplex Region continues to keep a close eye on the Mexican presidential election. Far-left populist Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador...has in the past taken a very dim view of the bi-lateral relationship between Mexico and the United States," Barela said.

Mexico's elections come as the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) continues to be renegotiated.

"It could have deep ramifications on the renegotiations of NAFTA," Barela said. "We're hopeful that we'll end up with a positive outcome, because if we don't reach a quick outcome on the renegotiations of NAFTA, it will spill over -- not only to the Mexican presidential election -- but also to our Congressional midterm elections. So there is a sense of urgency to get NAFTA renegotiated."

Carlos Rioja, of Horizon City, said he is registered to vote for the upcoming election. 

"The border is very important. Juarez and El Paso are very important. It all depends on what kind of president you have," Rioja said.

Mexican nationals living in the United States need to apply for their voting card by Saturday, March 31 in order to vote for the upcoming election.

"If you are living in this country, you also have the right to vote," Deputy Consul General Ricardo Hernandez Lecanda said. "Up to now we have 335 petitions for voting cards since January 1st. We are waiting for probably about 120 more by this coming Saturday."

Those looking to apply for a voting card need to take a Mexican Birth Certificate, valid I.D. and proof of an address. For more information you can go to www.votoextranjero.mx


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