And the winner of the presidential debate is...

Under Reserve features fact-checked news written by journalists and contributors to EL UNIVERSAL

And the winner of the presidential debate is...
The five presidential candidates of the 2018 General Election – Photo: AFP
English 23/04/2018 09:49 Mexico City OPINION: Under Reserve Actualizada 09:49

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And the winner of the presidential debate is…

In the first presidential debate, everyone saw their favorite candidate win yet the one who really stole the spotlight was the format. Even though there is always room for improvement, last night's format was less boring and wooden. It allowed ideas, accusations, and rebuttals to flow, and for the first time, the moderators – journalists – posed their own questions. The audience was able to see simultaneous takes of the candidates, their reactions, and their reflexes when replying to attacks and each other's proposals. So regardless of who saw Ricardo Anaya, José Antonio Meade, Andrés Manuel López Obrador, Jaime Rodríguez, or Margarita Zavala win, the true victor of the debate was the format.

Silvano and his brother

We're told that the decision of the Governor of the left Democratic Revolution Party (PRD) of Michoacán, Silvano Aureoles, of supporting José Antonio Meade, could affect his brother, Antonio García, who is running for congressman. The voices of some members of the conservative National Action Party (PAN) are beginning to demand the brother of Mr. Silvano be stripped of his candidacy. We're told that this idea some PAN members are voicing would be interpreted as the PRD breaking with the coalition “For Mexico to the Front” because, despite both politicians share a blood-bond, their positions and political actions are separate and there are several other cases of relatives who belong to or support different parties without this being a problem. Meanwhile, the candidate to Senator is holding his ground and continues campaigning even if his brother supports the PRI.

Blank missile against “El Bronco”

Parallel to the first debate of the presidential candidates, the legal battle is also escalating among the campaign teams and the federal and state electoral bodies: they are all firing complains at will. We're told that the national leadership of the left Democratic Revolution Party (PRD) filed a complaint against Jaime Rodríguez Calderón ("El Bronco") for his advertisement, broadcast on YouTube, titled “Faith” – in which the independent candidate attributes to a higher power being included in the ballot. However, we're told this spot is only broadcast on social media, a place with the widest freedom and where almost anything goes. So it seems the PRD missile against Mr. Jaime will be a blank one after all.

Mexico vs Germany heats up

Yesterday, during the opening of the Hannover Messe 2018 in Germany, the president of the German Engineering Federation, Martin Welcker, rejected ideas of walls and protectionism but did make it very clear to Mexican President Enrique Peña Nieto – who attended this event together with Chancellor Angela Merkel – that the only wall Mexico would face would be that of Germany's National Football team during the 2018 World Cup Russia. Later on, the President made it clear that he took note and said before a full Hannover Congress Centrum: “I celebrate that we will meet once again over a football, in Russia, and that it won't be walls protecting the goal but the talent of our football players, who will make us feel, and I wish success to the opening game between Mexico and Germany.” The match is heating up.