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McGill University
Political Science
POLI 211
Fillippo Sabetti

Poli 211 Lecture Notes th November 12 2012 Nobody’s backyard: The rise of Latin America  Overview of o Formal institutions infrastructures of Mexican politics (p.336) o Historical, original account of the kinds of institutions that Mexico has o The competitive democracy of 20 century Mexico  Mexico is an artifact of its past  Revolution o What can we learn by examining the topic of revolution in Mexico? o A different kind of revolution emphasized freedom from domination  Long period of transition: the transition period to modern representatives have taken a long time which suggests to us that the transition period for Russia and China (democracy) may be a lot longer than 20 years  Geography of Mexico o Diversity in geography between tropical rainforests, volcanoes, and rich agricultural regions o Productive agriculture areas o Population of 100 Million, people are mixed Spanish and indigenous origins o They live primarily in the central and Southern part of Mexico o Largest indigenous group are the Maya in the large south o Mexico city is one of the largest city in the world  1. What kind of political system does Mexico have today? o Mexico political system and its institutions do not dramatically differ and are somewhat similar to that of the United States o More power granted to the Mexican president o Constitution goes back to 1917, called for a presidential legislative system o A separation of judicial legislative and executive powers o Division of authority in the country in states in the national government o Legislature called the national congress o Chamber of deputies and has a upper house called the senate o States 32 o Electoral system o Mixed single member with proportional representation o Judicial system o All criteria of modern representative systems but they don’t quite work the same way as Americans because  Mexican 1917 constitution assigns more power to the president  Can elect executive decrees that have the force of law  Decisions in congress  He can generally veto legislation by the governors  Until the 1994, he had executive power to remove judges and as late as the 1982, the president on his authority can nationalize banks  Traditions of Mexican presidents was strengthened, the president can nominate his successor  Great deal of authority attached to presidency and the symbol of presidency (The Aztecs – Jacques Soustelle)  Unlike the United States, Mexican legislators cannot be reelected two consecutive terms  As a result, there are very few deputies who enter the house with any legislative experience (about less than 20%)  1917 legislators to prohibit the consecutive terms, was the fear of people staying in power for too long  As a result, it gives authority to the president through his party to select candidates on a regular basis  Similarly, it also created some deadlocks between the president and the house  Because there is no incentive to cooperate with the president, because he is only going to be there for 4-5 years  Gives authority to the president to select and nominate members of his party, at the same time, once they are elected, the members of the legislator to not have interest to cooperate with the president, as they are only there for one term  deadlock le
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