Saturday, May 5, 2012



Note: Not just el chapo's group active in this.

Mexico's top drug kingpin "Chapo" Guzman could sway election
By Diana Washington Valdez \ El Paso Times
Posted: 05/05/2012 12:00:00 AM MDT
Reporter: Diana Washington Valdez

Mexico's top drug kingpin represents a formidable political force
that could influence the outcome of the July 1 presidential election,
says a UTEP professor and author of a new book on election fraud.
Author Jorge Lopez Gallardo, a physics professor at the University of
Texas at El Paso, said that Joaquin "Chapo" Guzman has developed a
powerful network of politicians, industrialists, business leaders,
bankers and security officials that may exert influence on the
presidential and other, lower-level elections.
"El Chapo has developed his group of allies since he escaped from the
prison in Guadalajara," said Lopez, who holds The UTEP Physics
Department's Schumaker endowed chair. "I believed there was fraud in
the 2006 election, which I wrote about in my first book, and I
suspect that we may have fraud again. The question here is, who will
benefit from the fraud?"

Guzman's bloc is not necessarily tied to one political party or
candidate, Lopez said.
Lopez's book "2012 Election Fraud?" (University of Guadalajara; 2012)
will be released later this month and is the scientist's second book
on the Mexican election system. His first book was titled "2006
Election Fraud?"

Lopez said he detected fraud by applying systematic statistical
methods to his research of the electronic election returns.
"I'm a physics scientist, and I got interested in this kind of work
after someone talked me into watching the electronic results as they
were coming in and reported by the IFE," or Instituto Federal
"In this day and age," Lopez said, "electoral fraud takes place by
manipulating the electronic means and software that are used to
tabulate the votes."

A spokeswoman for the Mexican IFE in Mexico City on Friday directed
questions about potential and past fraud to the organization's
website (, and cited its stated commitment to
impartiality, objectivity and independence from parties and candidates.
IFE officials previously denied that fraud influenced the 2006 election.

Phil Jordan, former director of the El Paso Intelligence Center and
now a law enforcement consultant on the Mexican drug cartels, said he
can't talk about the fraud aspects of Mexican elections but agrees
with Lopez that Guzman has amassed considerable power.
"Chapo is the most powerful drug lord in the world, and he has the
money, guns and power to influence anything he wants to influence,"
Jordan said. "If Chapo is allowed to run the Mexican government, it
will be back to business as usual."

Jordan said the late Amado Carrillo Fuentes, founder of the Carrillo
Fuentes cartel, once remarked that he did not need to be the
president to exert power in Mexico.
"When someone asked Amado about being president,"
Jordan said, "he responded by saying, 'Why would I want to be
president if I am already the most powerful man in Mexico?' He had
power because he had direct access to Los Pinos (Mexico's
presidential palace), and he had the drug czar and other officials on
his payroll. And there was Pablo Escobar, the Colombian drug lord,
who was a politician."

The late Escobar, who achieved international notoriety, was involved
in drug trafficking when he was elected to Colombia's congress in
1982 as a representative for the Liberal Party.
Roderic Ai Camp, a foremost expert on Mexican politics, said voters
have a diverse field of candidates to choose from this year: Enrique
Peña Nieto, Institutional Revolutionary Party (PRI); Josefina Vazquez
Mota, National Action Party (PAN); Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador,
Revolutionary Democratic Party (PRD); and Gabriel Quadri de la Torre,
New Alliance Party (PANAL).
The first televised debate by all four candidates will take place
Sunday. The election is eight weeks away.
The latest polls indicate that the PRI candidate is the front-runner
and the PAN candidate is in second place. Under Mexico's new election
laws, the candidates were given only 90 days to campaign.
"It is the shortest campaign period in Mexican political history,"
said Camp, who lectured Friday at UTEP on the 2012 Mexican
presidential election.
"Mexican independent voters (30 to 45 percent) make up a critical
group in this election" Camp said.
"According to surveys, only about a fourth of all voters in Mexico
expressed a strong allegiance to a political party."
Camp said voters are swayed by a presidential candidate's appeal more
so than by a candidate's stated policies. He also said that for
several years, Mexican politicians have hired U.S. consultants to
advise them on their campaigns.

Camp is the Philip McKenna Professor of the Pacific Rim at Claremont
Mckenna College in California, and a consultant for the Woodrow
Wilson Center for International Scholars in Washington, D.C.
He said women may also play an important role in this year's
election. In the recent congressional elections in Mexico, 56 percent
of all voters were women.
In another development, recent surveys indicate that Vazquez, the
PAN's presidential candidate, is attracting more women voters than
the left-leaning Lopez Obrador of the PRD, the party considered to be
the country's most socially progressive party.
Camp said Peña Nieto is strong in all regions of the country, while
the other candidates are strong in only certain regions. He said some
candidates in the past have come from behind before to win on
election day. Examples he gave were Vicente Fox, the PAN candidate
who won in 2000, and Felipe Calderón, the current president, of the
same party.
All four candidates have been running campaign ads on Mexican
television networks and radio stations -- ads that are polished and
professionally produced.
Camp said that when it comes to what issues are most important to
Mexican citizens, the same top concerns have come up consistently
over the past 11 years: personal income, personal safety and
"Probably because of all the killings, insecurity is number one this
year," he said.
"A huge majority of people believe that organized crime is winning
the war."
He said organized crime has intimidated local officials and has
infiltrated local and state governments.
Irasema Coronado and Tony Payan, political science professors at
UTEP, announced during Camp's lecture at Blumberg Auditorium, that
they are collaborating on a research project on the Mexican election.
As a part of the project, they have developed a website to inform the
public about the events and process of the election process.
The website is at
The presidential debate will be broadcast at 7 p.m. on Sunday by many
Mexican TV stations.
"We are hosting a debate viewing and discussion at the campus, and
everyone is invited," Coronado said.
Diana Washington Valdez may be reached at;
546-6140; follow her on Twitter at @eptimesdiana.

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