It’s a little known fact that México leads the world in women’s representation in politics.
In 2019, Congress passed a Constitutional Reform that guarantees women’s equality in elected positions. By law, women must hold at least 50% of the seats in both the House of Representatives and the Senate. In 2021’s midterm elections, México also achieved equality in local congresses. In 2024, we will vote for Congressional delegates, nine governorships, and thousands of local offices, and we expect more women to take office. The cherry on top will be México's first female president — the top two candidates are women — Claudia Sheinbaum from Morena’s left-wing party and Xóchitl Gálvez of the right-wing Alliance.
Even back in 2000 when AMLO governed México City, at least half his cabinet appointees were women. He’s continued this practice as President as part of his women’s equality agenda. For the first time in history, women make up more than half of the Executive’s Cabinet, leading the departmental equivalents to the US Departments of Energy,* Education, and State, among others. A woman also heads the important office of Secretaria de Gobernación (similar to a Department of Interior or Home Affairs). By comparison, according to the United Nations, only 22.8%** of the world’s government ministers are women.
While the discussion about how public policy can achieve women’s equality continues, there is no doubt that the feminist movement’s historic fight for equality has found fertile soil in President AMLO’s administration. Even PRI and PAN, the right and far-right parties, have internalized that women belong to the public sphere, and they don’t reject — at least not publicly — these women’s rights’ policies. A colossal cultural win, no question.
None of this means that we don’t have a huge problem of violence against women; our country ranks among countries with the most violence. But we have good news too — femicides have decreased during AMLO’s presidency, and knowing we will have more and more women in power gives hope to us in a country that has long struggled with macho culture.