- Title: Mexican president embraces party change allowing outsider candidates
- Date: 12th August 2017
- Summary: MEXICO CITY, MEXICO (AUGUST 12, 2017) (REUTERS) ***WARNING CONTAINS FLASH PHOTOGRAPHY*** VARIOUS OF INSTITUTIONAL REVOLUTIONARY PARTY (PRI) MEMBERS OF STAGE AUDIENCE AT NATIONAL ASSEMBLY IN PALACIO DE LOS DEPORTES APPLAUDING PRI SECRETARY GENERAL, CLAUDIA RUIZ MASSIEU, ADDRESSING CROWD OIL WORKERS HOLDING UP SIGN THAT READS (Spanish) "OIL WORKERS WITH THE PRI" / PUNCHING AIR WITH FISTS MEXICAN PRESIDENT, ENRIQUE PENA NIETO, WALKING ON STAGE / GREETS CROWD TOGETHER WITH THE NATIONAL CHAIRMAN OF THE PRI PARTY, ENRIQUE OCHOA REZA (SOUNDBITE) (Spanish) MEXICAN PRESIDENT ENRIQUE PENA NIETO, SAYING: "With the declaration of principles approved by this assembly, the PRI has renewed its popular vocation and its will to continue being protagonist of Mexico's transformation." PENA NIETO ON STAGE AS HE ADDRESSES THE PRI NATIONAL ASSEMBLY AHEAD OF THE 2018 ELECTION (SOUNDBITE) (Spanish) MEXICAN PRESIDENT, ENRIQUE PENA NIETO, SAYING: "Our party acts with eyes set on Mexico's future, with determination we embrace change, openness and with it, the future. It's not the attachment to dogmas and doctrines that defines a true revolutionary but the ability to transform the reality so that the highest ideals of humanity take effect in our society." OCHOA REZA WALKING ON STAGE TO GIVE SPEECH (SOUNDBITE) (Spanish) NATIONAL CHAIRMAN OF THE PRI PARTY, ENRIQUE OCHOA REZA, SAYING: "We also give an opportunity so citizens who support the party can actively participate through it. We are a party that needs to break the locks. We are a party that opens the doors to society, because with society and party together, we are invincible." GENERAL VIEW OF ASSEMBLY FOLLOWING OCHOA REZA'S SPEECH CROWD CHEERING GENERAL VIEW OF PRI PARTY LEADERS ON STAGE SCREEN DISPLAYING LOGO OF PRI NATIONAL ASSEMBLY
- Embargoed: 26th August 2017 23:39
- Keywords: Mexico City PRI Mexico's ruling party Enrique Pena Nieto Jose Antonio Meade
- Location: MEXICO CITY, MEXICO
- City: MEXICO CITY, MEXICO
- Country: Mexico
- Topics: Government/Politics
- Reuters ID: LVA0016TUPFER
- Aspect Ratio: 16:9
- Story Text: Mexican President Enrique Pena Nieto on Saturday (August 12) endorsed a change to the Institutional Revolutionary Party's (PRI) rules that allows outsiders to run for president, a move that gives the embattled leader greater power to anoint his successor.
Gathering for their national assembly ahead of the 2018 election, members of the PRI, Mexico's ruling party, voted to relax requirements for presidential candidates, jettisoning a rule that nominees must be party members with at least 10 years' standing. The change opens the door to the candidacy of Pena Nieto's finance minister, Jose Antonio Meade, a soft-spoken technocrat who has served in various cabinet posts under both the PRI and the conservative National Action Party (PAN).
Pena Nieto greeted supporters in the crowd of more than 15,000 at Mexico City's Palacio de los Deportes. Pena Nieto echoed PRI leaders in describing the change as a move toward building a modern and more inclusive party.
The change also gives the PRI much-needed latitude to choose a candidate as it approaches a trying election. Persistent gang violence and tepid growth have eroded support for the PRI during Pena Nieto's term, and the party is also reeling from a series of corruption scandals.
If Meade became a presidential candidate, he would likely face outspoken leftist Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador. The PRI lagged far behind Lopez Obrador's party in a July poll.
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