Nearly 92% of the AMLO followers backed Mexican President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador to stay in office in a recall election with a low turnout (although only 8 out of every 10 registered voters went to the polls on Sunday).
This was announced by Mexico’s electoral institute on Monday, a result the president called a “total success.”
With over 99% of votes counted, the electoral institute said turnout in the Sunday vote was close to 18% of registered voters, well below a threshold of 40% for it to be binding.
Despite both critics and supporters alike viewing Lopez Obrador’s victory as a foregone conclusion, the overwhelming vote of support underlines his domination of a polarized political agenda in Mexico.
The ballot had fed speculation it could open the door to extending presidential term limits, now limited to a single six-year period, although Lopez Obrador has repeatedly said he is not seeking to extend his term.
In his regular morning news conference, Lopez Obrador heralded the results, describing participation levels as high across Mexico’s 31 states and the capital of Mexico City.
“This is something unprecedented in the history of our country … reaffirming that it’s the people who rule,” he said.
More than 15 million people voted for Lopez Obrador to stay in power, while more than 1 million cast ballots against him.
Lopez Obrador has used the referendum to fire up supporters and test his strength ahead of gubernatorial elections in June.
Political analysts have said Lopez Obrador is also likely to seize on the result as a personal triumph in his bid to push a constitutional change to the electricity market through Congress in the coming week, although he appears to be short of votes.