Jun 4, 2024 - Politics & Policy

Sheinbaum expected to tackle violence against women

Claudia Sheinbaum gives a speech Monday in front of a screen showing Mexico's coat of arms.

Claudia Sheinbaum gives a speech in the early hours of Monday. Photo: Héctor Vivas/Getty Images

Expectations are high that Claudia Sheinbaum, Mexico's first woman president-elect, will tackle violence in the country — particularly against women.

Why it matters: On average, 10 women are killed every day in Mexico.

Driving the news: Sheinbaum got 59% of the popular vote in Sunday's elections, netting even more electoral support than her mentor, the hugely popular outgoing President Andrés Manuel López Obrador.

  • The election drew a high turnout, even in places like Madrid and Los Angeles, where some Mexicans living abroad waited several hours to cast their vote.
  • In her victory speech, Sheinbaum highlighted her security proposals, saying she "will focus on tackling the causes (of violence) and eliminating impunity."

What they're saying: The killing of girls and women because of their gender, also known as femicide, could get more attention during Sheinbaum's presidency, even though she hasn't spelled out policy solutions, promising only to investigate the issue.

  • "She's likely to be more sensible to this matter, which could help move the needle if she adopts policies that better protect women," public policy analyst Lilian Chapa Koloffon tells Axios Latino.
  • Chapa Koloffon stresses much will still come down to improving the work of local police departments, which tend to lack funding and forensic training, or face accusations of violating due process.

Cecilia Patricia Flores, founder of Madres Buscadoras de Sonora, a group that searches for people forcibly disappeared, tells Axios Latino she hopes Sheinbaum will "bring actual change and listen to us as mothers of the missing," though she adds she doesn't think it's likely.

State of play: When Sheinbaum takes office in October, her Morena coalition will likely have a supermajority in Congress, per the current vote count.

  • That opens doors to easy passage of major reforms, such as changing the constitution to hand general policing work to the National Guard, a policy Sheinbaum has endorsed. Experts say such military-led policing is insufficient against crime and could give too much power to the Defense Ministry.
  • "She got a massive blank check, so there should be no excuses not to get things done on matters of major public concern like security," Gerardo Rodríguez, from the Universidad de las Américas Puebla, told Noticias Telemundo yesterday.

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