Mayor Z (for zombie)


On July 7, elections were held in 15 Mexican states for mayoral and congressional office, and one governorship in Baja California. The PRI (Institutional Revolutionary Party) took eight of the thirteen capital cities at stake, Veracruz suffered violence at the polls and everywhere there were complaints and glitches reported about the computer-based vote counting program, PREP (Preliminary Electoral Results Program). But the story that catapulted to the top of the headlines the morning after was about the mayor elect of San Agustín Amatengo, Oaxaca, a city of 1,450 inhabitants. Leninguer Raymundo Carballido ran for mayor of the town on a a PAN (National Action Party), PRD (Democratic Revolution Party) and PT (Labor Party) alliance ticket and won the municipal election. The only problem is he’s supposed to be dead. He faked a diabetic coma to avoid prosecution on a gang rape charge in 2010, and the charges were dropped in 2011. And of course, this “zombie mayor” is nowhere to be found. As a blogger for the Spanish daily ABC put it: “We know dead people vote in elections, but it’s less common that they win them. Or have Facebook accounts. Such is the case with Lenin Carballido.”

Mayors who have been presumed dead for 3 years? What’s next? Well, a cat named Morris who ran for mayor of Xalapa, Veracruz won 600 votes across the country on July 7. On his Facebook page, the “Candigato” remarked after election day: “We congratulate the real winners of the election: abstinence, apathy, corruption.”

I think Morris might agree with H.L. Mencken’s assessment: “Democracy is the art and science of running the circus from the monkey cage.” Or from the grave…or the litterbox.




Animal Político, Gana alcaldía tras fingirse muerto para no ir a la cárcel (July 10) and Caso del alcalde zombi da la vuelta al mundo (July 11)

Animal Político, El candigato Morris alcanza 600 votos en las elecciones (July 9)