The Politics of Mexico For The Past 85 Years

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    The Past 85 Years

  • The Cristero Rebellion

    The Cristero Rebellion
    An uprising against the government in power by Catholics after the government strictly enforced the anti-clerical provisions of the secular Constitution of 1917. The rebellion ended democratically with the help of the then US Ambassador to Mexico, Dwight Whitney Morrow, but only after 90,000 people died in total.
  • Maximato

    Maximato
    A period of political development from the years 1928-1934. Named after Plutarco Elias Calles, who was known as Jefe Maximo of the Mexican Revolution and president of the country from 1924-1928. During this six-year span, three presidents were in power, but they were subordinate to Calles.
  • The Partido Revolucionario Institucional (Institutional Revolutionary Party or PRI) is formed.

    The Partido Revolucionario Institucional (Institutional Revolutionary Party or PRI) is formed.
    The party was formed by General Plutarco Elias Calles, the President of Mexico from 1924 to 1928. This party has dominated Mexican politics for the upcoming decades, only losing power in 2000, to PAN (National Action Party) when Vicente Fox became President.
  • Lazaro Cardenas becomes President

    Lazaro Cardenas becomes President
    Lazaro Cardenas was a populist president who appealed to the peasant class and is remembered as one of the greatest figures that came out of the Mexican Revolution. He reformed education, nationalized the oil industry and Mexico experienced economic growth, even through the great depression.
  • Leon Trotsky Dies

    Leon Trotsky Dies
    Leon Trotsky was exiled form the Soviet Union in 1929. In the late 1930's, Trotsky ended up in Mexico. President Lazaro Cardenas welcomed him warmly, even sending for a special train to take him to Mexico City. He survived an assasination attempt in May 24, 1940 by Stalinist agents. In August 20, another assasination attempt was made, and this time a fatal wound was inflicted.
  • Manuel Avila Camacho becomes President

    Manuel Avila Camacho becomes President
    As the President of Mexico during World War 2, Camacho sided with the Allies. With his Bracero program, he sent upwards of 300,000 workers to the US to help with the war effort. His presidency is also of note because of his open profession of his Catholic faith. Anticlerics had been in power for the 20 previous years. After his presidency, he retired and worked on his farm until his death in 1955.
  • Mexico declares war on the Axis Powers

    Mexico declares war on the Axis Powers
    After two Mexican oil tankers were sunk by U-boats in the Gulf of Mexico, the Mexican government declared war on Japan, Germany and Italy.
  • Miguel Aleman Valdez becomes President

    Miguel Aleman Valdez becomes President
    Miguel Aleman Valdez's presidency was marked by crony capitalsm and political corruption, a precedent of the modern Mexican political system in place today.
  • Jose Clemente Orozco paints the mural "Juarez Reborn"

    Jose Clemente Orozco paints the mural "Juarez Reborn"
    Jose Clemente Orozco's final work. Orozco was a key member of the Mexican Mural Renaissance which has been a staple of Mexican art and Culture.
  • Adolfo Ruiz Cortines becomes President

    Adolfo Ruiz Cortines becomes President
    As the president of Mexico, Ruiz exercised tight control of public expenditures, in contrast to his predecessor Miguel Aleman. Ruiz also created a law whick required public servants to declare their assets before being able to work for the government. He is best known however for his bill to amend the Constitution that gave Mexican women the right to vote.
  • Adolfo Lopez Mateos becomes President

    Adolfo Lopez Mateos becomes President
    Adolfo Lopez Mateos was the first left-wing Mexican president since Lazaro Cardenas. During his presidency, social welfare investments reached its peak and land redistribution was a focus for the Lopez government.
  • Gustavo Diaz Ordaz becomes President

    Gustavo Diaz Ordaz becomes President
    Gustavo Diaz Ordaz is a despised figure in Mexican political history. He ruled with an authoritarian manner over his cabinet and over the country as a whole. He is best known for one of the most infamous events in Mexican history, the Tlatelolco Massacre.
  • The Tlatelolco Massacre

    The Tlatelolco Massacre
    Student demonstration in Tlatelolco, Mexico City, during the Olympic Games is fired upon by Mexican security forces. Hundreds of protestors, mostly Univerity students who identified with the counterculture protestors north of the border, are killed or wounded. The extent of the violence shocks the country.
  • Luis Echeverria Alvarez becomes President

    Luis Echeverria Alvarez becomes President
    During Echeverria's presidency, the econimics of the country suffered. The devaluation of the Peso and the more than threefold increase in debt alienated the Mexican people in not just Echeverria, but in the PRI itself. His name is also shows up in Mexican politics after his presidency, ranging from Echeverria loyalists holding high positions in the government or Cartel connections.
  • Corpus Christi Massacre

    Corpus Christi Massacre
  • New oil fields found

    New oil fields found
    Huge offshore oil reserves discovered; the Cantarell field becomes the mainstay of Mexico's oil production.
  • Jose Lopez Portillo

    Jose Lopez Portillo
    Jose Lopez Portillo served under his close friend Luis Echeverria Alvarez as finance minister. Later in his presidency, he nationalized the Mexican banking industry. He was the last "central" president, subsequent leaders became more market oriented. His administration was constantly accused of rampant corruption.
  • Miguel de la Madrid Hurtado becomes President

    Miguel de la Madrid Hurtado becomes President
    His administration inherited one of the most difficult times in modern Mexican history due to his predecessors' policies and the decreasing demand for oil. Unemployment rates reached 25% during the mid-80's. De la Madrid implemented liberal economic policies that encouraged foreign investment and privatized many state run institutions, in addition to significant austerity measures. In 1985, his administration refused foreign aid for the massive earthquake that killed thousands.
  • Mexico City Earthquake

    Mexico City Earthquake
    9.0 magnitude earthquake in Mexico City reportedly kills tens of thousands of people and left many more homeless.
  • Carlos Salinas de Gortari becomes President

    Carlos Salinas de Gortari becomes President
    The 1988 presidential elections were famous for the crashes of the computers that kept track of the votes. Nevertheless, many people believed tha Salinas won, but with the smallest margin of victory for any PRI candidate up to that point. During his presidency, Salinas decreased the inflation rate to its lowest figure in 22 years. He also negotiated the NAFTA with the US and Canada. He also reformed the strongly anticlerical parts of governent, which banned religious ministers to vote.
  • North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) is implemented

    North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) is implemented
    The goal of NAFTA is to lower the barriers to trade between the economies of its members.The trade bloc that was created between the three countries became the largest in the world in terms of GDP.
  • The Chiapas Rebellion

    The Chiapas Rebellion
    A guerrilla rebellion in Chiapas by the Zapatista National Liberation Army is brutally suppressed by government troops. The rebels opposed NAFTA and wanted greater recognition for Indian rights. The government recognized the Zapatista National Liberation Front (EZLN).
  • Luis Donaldo Colosio is assasinated

    Luis Donaldo Colosio is assasinated
    Luis Donaldo Colosio was the presidential candidate for the PRI suring the 1994 election. While campaigning in Tijuana, a man simply walked up to him and shot him in the head. The assassin was taken in for questioning, and insisted he acted alone. However, rumors of political foul play spread, the most viable being connected with the previous president, Carlos Salinas, who was actually sent into exile after his brother, Raul Salinas, was connected with the assasination.
  • Ernesto Zedillo Ponce de Leon becomes President

    Ernesto Zedillo Ponce de Leon becomes President
    Ernesto Zedillo Ponce de Leon was the campaign manager for Luis Colosio. After his assasination, The incumbent, Salinas, chose Zedillo as the replacement. However, the opposition saw this as Salinas just retaining power, for Zedillo was not a politician, but an economist. Nevertheless, Zedillo took power and only a few days later, a major economic crisis hit Mexico, though Salinas is usually blamed for the crisis. Mexico only recovered after Bill Clinton loaned $50 billion to Mexico.
  • The December Mistake

    The December Mistake
  • The Aguas Blancas Massacre

    The Aguas Blancas Massacre
    On June 28, 1995, Guerrero state police ambushed a truckload of dissident farmers, killing 17 and injuring 20. The police blamed the violence on the peasants, and released a crudely edited video of the incident, apparently showing dead farmers with weapons in their hands. Despite outrage directed at state governor Ruben Figueroa, he refused to resign. After the unedited video was found showing unarmed peasants being shot. Figueroa, who was backed by Zedillo, was forced to resign.
  • Acteal Massacre

    Acteal Massacre
    The Acteal Massacre was perpetrated by the Red Mask, a paramilitary group. 45 members of Las Abejas, a pacifist group who supported the Zapatistas, were killed during a prayer meeting in Chiapas. 13 of the deceased were under 10 years old.
  • Vicente Fox Quesada becomes President

    Vicente Fox Quesada becomes President
    Vicente Fox's election marks the first time in Mexican history that an incumbent leader turned over power to the oppositon party peacefully. Fox was a member of PAN (National Action Party) and the first non-PRI member president since 1928. Fox is best known for his charisma and "cowboy" style. During his administration, the economy was stable, albeit growing slowly. Inflation was low. During his presidency, the #1 source of revenue became remittances by Mexican immigrants.
  • Zapatour

    Zapatour
    Zapatista guerrillas, led by Subcomandante Marcos, stage their 'Zapatour', a march from Chiapas to Mexico City to highlight their demands.
  • Parliament passes a bill that gives more rights to indigenous people

    Parliament passes a bill that gives more rights to indigenous people
    Parliament passed a bill that increased the rights of indigenous people. A few days later, Subcomandante Marcos (the spokesman of the Zapatista Army of National Liberation) rejects the bill, saying it leaves the Indian population worse off than before. Marcos said the uprising in Chiapas will continue.
  • Secure Fence Act passes

    Secure Fence Act passes
    US President George W Bush signed legislation to build 1,125km (700 miles) of fencing along the US-Mexico border. Mexico condemns plans for the barrier, which is intended to curb illegal immigration.
  • Felipe de Jesus Calderon Hinojosa becomes President

    Felipe de Jesus Calderon Hinojosa becomes President
    Conservative candidate Felipe Calderon was declared the winner of presidential elections with a razor-thin majority over his leftist rival, Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador, who challenged the result with mass street protests. Calderon served as Secretary of Energy in Vicente Fox's cabinet. Calderon's administration has done work on environmental issues, immigration reform and universal healthcare, but it will probably be remembered for the its extensive and popular handling of the drug war.
  • Calderon declares war on drug cartels

    Calderon declares war on drug cartels
    President Felipe Calderón assumes office and declares war on drug traffickers. He also imposes a cap on salaries of high-ranking public servants and orders a raise on the salaries of the Federal Police and the Mexican armed forces.
  • Carlos Slim overtakes Bill Gates as the richest person in the world

    Carlos Slim overtakes Bill Gates as the richest person in the world
    On August 8, 2007, Fortune reported that Mexican tycoon Carlos Slim had overtaken Gates as the world's richest man. Slim's estimated fortune soared to $59 billion, based on the value of his public holdings at the end of July. Gates' net worth was estimated to be at least $58 billion
  • Tabasco Flood

    Tabasco Flood
    Heavy rains flood nearly the entire southern state of Tabasco. Some 500,000 are made homeless in one of the country's worst natural disasters.
  • Subcomandante Marcos's speech backing Palestine's struggle against Israel

    Subcomandante Marcos's speech backing Palestine's struggle against Israel
  • San Fernando Massacre

    San Fernando Massacre
    The mass murder of 72 illegal immigrants by the Los Zetas cartel. Investigators later reported that people were killed because they refused to work for the Cartel. The police captured Edgar Huerta Montriel, a high-ranking lieutenant in Los Zetas and is held responsible for the massacre. This event is only of hundreds of violent events that have plagued Mexico during the Drug War.
  • Monterrey Casino Attack

    Monterrey Casino Attack
    An attack on the Casino Royale in Monterrey kills 52 people, after gunmen douse the building with fuel and set it alight. President Calderon describes the attack as "an abhorrent act of terror." The attack was a result of the split between the Gulf Cartel and Los Zetas.