This article is adapted from AQ’s special report on Latin America’s election super-cycle
Very few people would have guessed even six months ago that there would be two female candidates competing for the presidency of Mexico.
But there are—and on October 1, 2024, Mexico will inaugurate its first female president, either Claudia Sheinbaum or Xóchitl Gálvez. It is difficult to find any other country where the two main candidates for the presidency are both women, let alone in Latin America.
This should not be totally surprising, however, given the transformation of women assuming public sector leadership in Mexico over the last five years. There is now gender parity across most of the public sector. Women now make up half the Cabinet, lead the Supreme Court and make up at least 50% of Congress. In fact, Mexico stands fourth out of 185 countries in the Inter-Parliamentary Union’s ranking of women’s representation in legislatures. Finally, seven of 32 governors are women.
The result is an ever-growing pool of women experienced in politics and in the art of governing. This is great news, as studies show that women are more likely to build consensus and advocate for a socially inclusive agenda. A female president will also be an amazing role model for all women in Mexico and across Latin America—not just in the public sector, but in the private sector.
For me, I can only dream of the day when we have parity among male and female leaders across all countries of the hemisphere. And while this may take several years to accomplish, Mexico is certainly an outstanding step in that direction.
Tags: Claudia Sheinbaum, Elections 2024, Mexico, Women in politics, Xochitl Galvez