The candidates' proposals during the second presidential debate

From a new security strategy to “charging the U.S. for migrants,” take a look at the proposals made by the four presidential candidates during the Tijuana debate

The candidates' proposals during the second presidential debate
Photos (left to right): Ginnette Riquelme/REUTERS; Gustavo Graf/REUTERS; José Mendez/EFE; Alfredo Estrella/AFP
English 21/05/2018 12:50 Newsroom Mexico City Actualizada 12:54
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The second presidential debate premiered a new format, being held before an audience of 42 Tijuana citizens out of whom six got to pose questions to the candidates in each section, sparking debate, comments, and responses.

The debate, moderated by journalists Yuriria Sierra and León Krauze, focused mainly on trade, immigration, the Mexico-U.S. border, and transnational criminal organizations.

While the second debate also featured an exchange of accusations and attacks, here are the proposals made by all four presidential candidates:

Ricardo Anaya Cortés

(Photo: Guillermo Arias/AFP)

  • Increase minimum daily wages to MXN$100 and double it during the first four years of his administration.
  • Eliminate income tax (ISR) to all employees earning less than MXN$10, 000 a month.
  • Reduce by 50% the value of the VAT.
  • Launch a national infrastructure plan to make Mexico a competitive country.
  • Devise a new security strategy to fight organized crime, corruption within law enforcement, promote sports and culture, and demand the United States to “do their part” regarding firearms trafficking.
  • Open debate on marihuana legalization with experts, as he believes legalizing cannabis will not decrease violence rates.
  • Diversify and refocus Mexico's relationship with the United States as, according to him, 80% of Mexico's exports are sent to our northern neighbor. Moreover, Anaya claims he will act with “dignity” to “defend the national interest.”
  • Regarding Mexico-U.S. relations, Anaya proposes to put all matters “on the discussion table” and not review them independently.
  • Devise a national plan to promote ports, airports, and highways.

Andrés Manuel López Obrador

(Photo: Guillermo Arias/AFP)

  • Propose to the United States, as part of the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) renegotiation, the signature of an “Alliance for Progress,” which includes the U.S., Canada, Mexico, and Central American countries so there are joint projects aimed to achieve the well-being, and peace, in the region. According to the candidate, this would be a comprehensive plan not only focusing on trade but in matters which can secure and protect migrants.
  • Include minimum daily wage increase in NAFTA negotiation and double minimum daily wages in Mexico.
  • Transform Mexico consulates in the United States in offices for the defense of migrants.
  • Appoint Alicia Bárcenas as Mexico's Representative of Mexico to the United Nations.
  • Improve domestic policies so Mexican citizens do not feel the need to immigrate, as “the best foreign policy is the domestic policy.”
  • Encourage production and create more job opportunities in Mexico.
  • End corruption and organized crime through crop substitution and the improvement of Mexico's well-being.

José Antonio Meade Kuribreña

(Photo: Guillermo Arias/AFP)

  • Strengthen Mexico and protect it from the attacks of foreign powers.
  • Defend trade openness as the contrary would mean losing job opportunities.
  • Do not agree to any deal not based on respect.
  • Diversify Mexico's trade with other regions of the world.
  • Purchase products at low costs to sell domestic products to the United States and other regions.
  • Collaborate with U.S. authorities to find a way to provide driver's licenses, legal assistance, access to health services, and education for Mexican families in the United States.
  • Ensure Mexican migrants, upon their return to Mexico, find job opportunities, education, access to health services and credit loans. Furthermore, offer legal assistance so they can be defended before U.S. courts.
  • Work with Mexican communities so they can reinforce education and change their future and that of their region.
  • Find more investment opportunities in the South so this region becomes more productive and thus, narrow the economic gap to contain migration.
  • Install natural gas pipelines from Coatzacoalcos to Salinas Cruz and from there to Tapachula.

Jaime Heliodoro Rodriguez Calderón

(Photo: Guillermo Arias/AFP)

  • “Put the U.S. in its place” and find other markets and countries to trade with, such as India, Korea, Japan, and South America.
  • Recover Banamex.
  • Use the funds from social welfare programs to increase wages.
  • Lower income tax (ISR) from 35% to 30%, VAT from 16% to 10% and remove taxes to gas.
  • Tackle corruption in Mexico's customs.
  • On marihuana legalization and drug trafficking, Rodríguez proposed to conduct a survey to know how many drug users there are in Mexico and better assess the situation to then devise a strategy.
  • Transform the state of Chiapas into the “California” of Mexico so the country is able to offer job opportunities to Central American migrants.
  • Retain 5% of remittances to defend migrants.
  • Charge the U.S. "for what Mexico has invested in migrants".
  • Take advantage of Mexico's heritage and resources to reinsert deported migrants.
  • Encourage business opportunities in northern cities such as Tijuana, Nogales, Reynosa and Piedras Negras.
  • Divide federal budget and assign 50% of it to the states.


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