The 2024 Mexican Elections: A New Era in Mexican Politics

An in-depth analysis of the historic 2024 Mexican general elections, focusing on the election of Claudia Sheinbaum as Mexico's first female and Jewish president.

The 2024 Mexican Elections: A New Era in Mexican Politics

The 2024 Mexican general elections, held on June 2, 2024, were historic on multiple fronts. Not only did they mark the election of Mexico's first female and Jewish president, Claudia Sheinbaum, but they also underscored significant political shifts, challenges, and hopes for the nation's future.

Claudia Sheinbaum's Historic Victory

Claudia Sheinbaum, representing the ruling Morena party and supported by the Sigamos Haciendo Historia coalition, emerged victorious with an overwhelming majority, securing between 58.3% and 60.7% of the vote. Her main competitor, Xóchitl Gálvez of the Fuerza y Corazón por México coalition, garnered 26.6% to 28.6% of the vote. This election is noteworthy for being the first in Mexico's history where the leading contenders for the presidency were both women, marking a significant milestone in gender equality.

Sheinbaum's win is also significant as she became the first Jewish president of Mexico, reflecting the nation's growing acceptance and diversity in its political landscape.

Legislative Elections and Voter Participation

In addition to the presidential race, all 500 members of the Chamber of Deputies and 128 members of the Senate were elected. This was the first election allowing legislators to seek re-election, potentially impacting future political stability and continuity.

The voter turnout was impressive at 60.195%, with nearly 100 million registered voters, including a record number of first-time voters. This high level of participation reflects a strong engagement in the democratic process despite the country's challenges.

Key Issues and Challenges

Several pressing issues shaped the 2024 elections, including violence, economic policies, corruption, and governance.

1. Violence and Security

The election period was one of the most violent in Mexico's history, with numerous candidates at state and local levels being targeted and killed, primarily by drug cartels and organized crime groups. Security concerns were paramount for voters, who sought solutions to the pervasive violence that has plagued the nation for years.

This violence wasn't limited to the election period alone. Over the past decade, Mexico has struggled with rising crime rates, with the drug war contributing significantly to the instability. The incoming administration's strategy to combat this violence will be closely watched, particularly given Sheinbaum's support for continuing the controversial "hugs, not bullets" policy of her predecessor, López Obrador, which emphasizes social programs over confrontation with criminal organizations.

2. Economic and Social Policies

Sheinbaum's campaign promised to continue and expand the welfare programs initiated by her predecessor, focusing on reducing economic inequality and supporting marginalized communities. Key initiatives include expanding universal pensions, increasing funding for education and healthcare, and implementing youth apprenticeship programs. However, these promises come with significant fiscal challenges, particularly in managing the national budget and addressing the widening fiscal deficit.

The Mexican economy has shown resilience, with steady growth projections bolstered by favourable macroeconomic conditions in the United States and the benefits of nearshoring.

Nonetheless, Sheinbaum's administration must navigate economic headwinds, including the potential impact of global economic fluctuations and the fiscal strain of social programs.

3. Corruption and Governance

Corruption remains a critical issue in Mexico, with many public institutions lacking transparency and facing budget cuts. The previous administration made some strides in addressing corruption, but much work remains. Sheinbaum's administration must tackle these challenges head-on to improve governance and restore public trust.

One of the major concerns is the potential fragmentation of Congress. Morena, Sheinbaum's party, aimed to secure a two-thirds majority to enable constitutional reforms. However, achieving this majority is uncertain, which could lead to weaker governability and significant challenges in passing substantial reforms.

4. Social and Gender Equality

This election was historic not only because Sheinbaum became the first female president but also because it was the first time the leading contenders were both women. This milestone reflects Mexico's progress in gender equality, yet significant challenges remain.

Sheinbaum's administration is expected to focus on gender issues, including tackling gender-based violence, improving women's access to education and healthcare, and promoting women's participation in the workforce and politics.

Her victory has inspired a new generation of women to engage more actively in politics and public life.

Historical Significance and Future Outlook

The 2024 elections are a landmark event in Mexico's democratic history, not only because of Sheinbaum's historic win but also due to the broader implications for gender equality and political reform. Her inauguration on October 1, 2024, will be significant, symbolizing the potential for substantial political and social change in Mexico.

Economic Outlook

Mexico's economy is expected to grow steadily, supported by favourable macroeconomic conditions in the United States and the benefits of nearshoring. The GDP growth rate in 2024 is projected to be higher than the 30-year average, driven by falling inflation and interest rates.

However, managing the fiscal deficit, which is forecast to widen to 5.5% of GDP due to higher spending on pensions and public works, will require careful fiscal discipline and potentially unpopular tax reforms.

Security and Violence

The unprecedented levels of political violence during the election season underscore the ongoing challenges in addressing security concerns. While Sheinbaum has pledged to continue her predecessor's non-confrontational approach, this strategy has been criticized for its ineffectiveness.

Balancing the militarization of public security with human rights considerations will be a critical test for the new administration.

Social and Welfare Programs

Sheinbaum has promised to continue and expand the social programs initiated by López Obrador, such as universal pensions and youth apprenticeship programs. These programs are popular but place a significant burden on the national budget. Without exacerbating the fiscal deficit, sustaining these initiatives will require innovative solutions, including potential new taxes or other revenue sources.

Governance and Political Stability

The legislative dynamics will be crucial for Sheinbaum's administration. Morena aims to secure a two-thirds majority in Congress to enable constitutional reforms. However, a fragmented Congress could make passing significant reforms challenging, impacting the administration's ability to govern effectively.

Environmental and Energy Policies

Sheinbaum has pledged to invest in green energy initiatives and address environmental challenges. However, her record on environmental issues as Mexico City's mayor has been mixed, and it remains to be seen how effectively she can implement these policies at the national level.

The energy sector, particularly the state-owned oil company Pemex, poses significant challenges. Balancing support for state-owned enterprises with the need for fiscal discipline and investment in renewable energy will be a key focus.

U.S.-Mexico Relations

The new president will face intense pressure from the United States to address migration issues and curb cartel violence. Rebuilding trust and cooperation with U.S. security agencies will be crucial for addressing these challenges.

Mexico's relationship with the United States will remain a key factor in its economic performance, especially with potential shifts in U.S. leadership.


The 2024 Mexican general elections represent a pivotal moment in the country's history. Claudia Sheinbaum's presidency brings hope for progress and reform and highlights the remaining significant hurdles.

As Mexico navigates this new chapter, the world will be watching to see how these historic elections translate into meaningful change for the Mexican people.

The effectiveness of Sheinbaum's policies in addressing violence, fiscal discipline, and governance will be critical in determining whether Mexico's situation will improve in the coming years.