Filed Under:  Cartels, Mexican Cartels, Mexico

Mexican cartels use guns, cash to sway election

June 30th 2012   ·   18 Comments

EMILIANO ZAPATA, Mexico – Before the sun climbed above the hills around this central Mexican town, Saul Garcia and his family awoke to the sound of bullets piercing the front gate.

A masked motorcyclist had opened fire on their brick home, leaving behind a poster signed by La Familia drug cartel, warning the mayoral candidate to withdraw from the race or the gang would kill him, his wife and three children.

Garcia, a candidate for the local Social Democratic Party, didn’t pull out. A state police officer now follows Garcia 24 hours a day while he courts voters on the steep and narrow streets of Emiliano Zapata, a suburb of Cuernavaca in the state of Morelos.

As Mexicans head to the ballot box Sunday, drug cartels are registering their votes with scare tactics and cold, hard cash to make sure whoever is elected doesn’t interfere with their lucrative operations. The focus is usually on local politics, where officials and their police departments can cause problems, or smooth the way, for gangs moving drugs or shaking down businesses. It’s also easier to influence a local race than an extensive, well-financed national election in the glare of media coverage.

Drug cartels aren’t political, they’re practical. Officials from all three major parties have been accused of drug gang ties, or have come under attack. Gangs support candidates they can buy off or scare off – and government officials say they’re fighting back.

“We’ve said for several months that we have to recognize the presence and action of criminal groups around the election, particularly in the local sphere,” Mexico’s federal interior secretary, Alejandro Poire, said Thursday. “We are acting to contain it, to prevent it and to bring those responsible to justice.”

Garcia says he doesn’t know why he was targeted.

“I don’t have enemies,” said Garcia, whose home was attacked April 30. “When I realized they were threatening me and saying I had to quit, I thought, ‘But wait, we are free to vote and to be elected.’ ”

Election violence this season has flared in Morelos and in other states where voters will choose six governors and hundreds of mayors and council members. While the federal government does not track the number of candidates threatened, there have been scattered reports of attacks or threats against politicians and campaign workers in several states, including a gubernatorial candidate in Morelos.

A Morelos state official said La Familia is seeking to control small towns like Emiliano Zapata since taking a beating in its home state, neighboring Michoacan. There, the cartel has been wounded by government attacks and an internal split.

In Michoacan state elections last fall, an anonymous newspaper ad threatened members of the governing National Action Party to stay home on election day in a town whose mayor already had been killed.

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Readers Comments (18)

  1. Jean Mohler says:

    of course……………..

  2. Ummm I DIDN’T know this was news………..I had a friend many years ago who’s uncle won an election for governor of sonora Mexico. The incumbent decided he didn’t want to leave office…..SOooo the NEWLY elected governor NEVER took his chair…….That was in the 80′s

  3. Bob Johnson says:

    So what else is new, they Hve done this since the Spainards landed back in the 1500′d

  4. Was that in Mexico or Washington?

  5. Same thing in the USA. that is what the US has become.

  6. Obama helps the cartels by leaving the boarder open so the cartels can sell their drugs,,,blood drips from obama’s hands,,

  7. Of course they do! If Obama stays in office they get their product across the border and continue to fund terrorism.

  8. Mark Vazquez says:

    Sell the Cartels 3000 more guns so they can finish the job.

  9. Kathy Bolsen says:

    Along the border on the US side, they have been taking hostages for extortion, ransom, etc in increasing frequency since Obama and F&F

  10. Yes, and it could start happening here as well, IMHO!!!

  11. Guns they got from Holder and Obama. What a joke!

  12. Bennie Humes says:

    And our government is in on the entire entire operation. Why else would Obummer be shielding Holder. These are the main two who are corrupting our entire country.

  13. You would think this would curb the vote among hispanics for BHO. I suppose they think USA will be more like Mexico. They must like the corruption, drugs and living in fear every day of your life.

  14. really, that would be a shock,that they would do something illegal

  15. Chuck Hajek says:

    American democraps use illegal aliens and the dead to win elections.

  16. Doesn’t matter what party is in office, they all steal from us, that’s a fact!

  17. Would not be surprised if the LIBS try it too!!! If so, there will be a price to pay!!!!

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