The recently approved budget for 2024 has stirred up a significant controversy in the Mexican Congress. President Andrés Manuel López Obrador expressed his contentment with the budget, highlighting its strong focus on social welfare.
However, the contentious issue arose from within the president’s own party, Morena, when supporters of former Foreign Minister Marcelo Ebrard attempted to include a provision to allocate 15% of excess oil revenues to the recovery efforts for the devastating hurricane Otis in Guerrero.
The proposal was not approved, leading to a heated altercation. Amidst the commotion, Morena deputy Selene Ávila accused her colleagues of betraying those affected by the disaster and labeled the party as traitors to the nation.
President’s Satisfaction with the Budget
President López Obrador has repeatedly expressed his satisfaction with the budget for 2024. He highlights the significant social impact it will have, with approximately 400 billion pesos allocated for the elderly, representing a 25% increase, and a doubling of the number of student scholarships for primary education.
These measures aim to address social inequalities and promote equal opportunities for all. While opposition parties have criticized the budget as being politically motivated and focused on clientelism, the unexpected criticism from within Morena has surprised many.
Internal Divisions within Morena
The uproar caused by the budget proposal within Morena has raised questions about the party’s unity. Some speculate that the incident may provide a cause for Marcelo Ebrard to leave Morena. The embattled deputy, Selene Ávila, accused her colleagues of abandoning their reason for being in politics and betraying their ideals. The government recently presented a recovery plan for Guerrero, amounting to 61.3 billion pesos, as the state has been severely affected by the hurricane, with thousands of families losing everything and the economy in shambles.
Chaotic Scene in Congress
The confrontations in Congress surrounding the budget proposal took a chaotic turn. After the initial shock, Morena deputies confronted Selene Ávila, resulting in a heated exchange. The scene resembled a street brawl, with deputies crowded together, and others joining in to provide support. It is not uncommon for such incidents to occur in the Mexican Congress, but it is disheartening to witness the representatives of the people displaying such behavior and expressing their discontent in such a manner.
The Politicization of the Tragedy in Guerrero
The tragedy in Guerrero, caused by hurricane Otis, has not only brought out the solidarity of the people but has also been heavily politicized. From the early hours of the disaster, politicians sought to capitalize on the situation for their own gain. In the Senate, Mario Delgado, the president of Morena, was accused of appropriating the relief efforts as a party action and using it for photo opportunities. The opposition, as well as members from all political parties, participated in the collection of supplies. The aid for Acapulco, one of the hardest-hit areas, has become a focal point of political contention.
President López Obrador’s Call for Unity
In response to the internal strife within Morena, President López Obrador expressed his hope for unity and reminded everyone of the importance of focusing on the well-being of the people and the nation. He emphasized that politicians should fight for ideals, not for personal gain or positions. He also stated that the dissenting Morena deputies are free to express their opinions. This call for unity reflects the president’s commitment to his vision for a better Mexico.
The approval of the 2024 budget has triggered a fierce battle among Morena deputies in the Mexican Congress. While the president lauds the budget’s social focus, internal divisions within Morena have led to heated confrontations. The politicization of the tragedy in Guerrero has further exacerbated tensions.
President López Obrador’s call for unity reminds politicians of their duty to prioritize the well-being of the people and the nation. This budget fight serves as a reminder that politics, even within the same party, can be a tumultuous arena where personal ambitions and principles clash.