Mexico fact of the day

Number of Mexicans in the USA who voted in the recent (Mexican) Presidental election: 28,000.

I find this to be remarkably low.  58 percent of those voted for Calderon, although presumably the small number of voters corresponds to a strong selection effect rather than a representative sample.

Here is one account, although it does not look into the reasons for non-voting very deeply.  Thanks to Sergio Hernandez for the pointer.


There were more votes from the US for the latest Italian election -- 55,000.


A few comments:

I. The correct figures are as follow (nr=not registered, nulos=not valid):

pan prd pri alt panal nr nulos total
19016 11090 1360 887 128 29 111 32621
58.29 33.99 4.16 2.71 .39 .08 .34

II. Is the number of votes from abroad low? Well, let us look what one needed to do in order to be able to vote from abroad in the 2006 Mexican election. If one was to register to vote from abroad, a Mexican needed:

i) To have registered to vote while still in Mexico, before moving to the US (so you are doomed if you left Mexico before you were 18, as you can't register to vote before you turn 18);

ii) To currently have in his/her posession his/her voter registration card. If you lost it, you'd have to go back to Mexico to get it replaced.

iii) To have proof that he/she lives in the U.S. (i.e. utilities/phone bill, driver's license, etc)

iv) To make photocopies of his/her voting registration card (which presumably he/she brought from Mexico, and still has with him/herself)

v) To download (or go to the appropriate Mexican consulate and get in hard copy) a form he/she needs to fill and mail (please see vi below), along with copies of iii) and iv) to Mexico.

vi) The Mexican in question needs to mail his/her documents VIA REGISTERED MAIL (over 10 USD). If he/she uses regular mail (or priority mail, or any other type of mail), her documentation will be (not so promptly) returned (I know this well; see below).

vii) For example, in my case, registering to vote from abroad cost me around 21 USD (10 bucks the first time, when I sent my documentation via priority mail; 11 bucks the second time, when I used registered mail).

Only after completing vii did I receive my absentee ballot, which I then mailed back with my vote (only for president, as one can't vote from abroad for any other offices).

I think if one is to point anything in terms of the proportion of votes mustered by each party among Mexicans living abroad, the thing to note is the miniscule proportion of the votes that went for the PRI.

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