The Fourth Transformation has remained a failed project of true change, rather it is the reinforcement of presidentialism embodied in a single figure that concentrates all powers.

Faith has been one of the factors that Andrés Manuel López Obrador has best exploited politically and electorally since his first steps as a social leader, then as a party leader and in recent years as President of the Republic. It is no coincidence that he called his first march from Tabasco to Mexico City the Exodus for Democracy and that he named his party Morena.

In the 2018 elections, faith and hope for change and improvement in the situation of violence, corruption, insecurity and poverty were largely the driving force behind the 30 million votes with which López Obrador swept the election before his contenders José Antonio Mead and Ricardo Anaya.

That same faith and hope transformed into a government program that bears the name of Wellbeing (an expression also full of religious overtones) was the promise that the López Obrador administration offered to the people to take them from a stage of suffering to another of abundance, peace and happiness through social programs that carried the president’s nickname as a franchise.

With that promise of transformation, López Obrador prophetically issued that phrase “to hell with your institutions” as an announcement of what he would do when he sat in the presidential chair.

Enthroned from the National Palace, a building built on the Aztec ruins by orders of Hernán Cortés and that López Obrador decided to turn into his political fortress, from there he ordered his legislators grouped in Morena the disappearance or change of 23 organizations and institutions forged in decades by civil groups committed to the democratic transition.

Just to list some of the institutions that he sent to hell, returning to his own words, we can mention the National Savings Bank and Financial Services (Bansefi), the National Entrepreneur Institute (Inadem), the National Institute of Educational Evaluation (INEE), the Popular Insurance, the National Council of Science and Technology (Conacyt) that replaced it with one created at its convenience; the Scientific and Technological Consultative Forum (FCCyT), the Mexican State News Agency (Notimex), the Disaster Fund (Fonden), children’s stays, Prospera and community kitchens, among others.

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By the work and grace of his will he created the Health Institute for Well-being (Insabi), which later disappeared due to being a failure; the Institute to Return What was Stolen to the People, which was almost annulled by corruption scandals; the Megapharmacy, which has been a disappointment; the Welfare Scholarships, which have failed to promote education; the Welfare Secretariat, with unsuccessful programs, and the Universities for Welfare, which are not a real option for the professional training of the 300 thousand young people who cannot access public or private universities.

Brunette. López Obrador appendix. Photo: Eduardo Miranda.

If at the institutional level the faith of a transformation became a trap, at the political level it was a great deception.

Morena could never become a party, it has remained an appendix movement to the will of López Obrador, who decides who are the candidates for popularly elected positions called corcholatas. The legislators blindly follow his Pastor, who orders them to approve laws without changing a single comma. And with his flaming finger he punishes and ostracizes those who disobey his will. You are with me or against me is his dogma.

In the traps of López Obrador’s faith, the Fourth Transformation has remained a failed project of true change, rather it is the reinforcement of presidentialism embodied in a single figure who concentrates all powers, disqualifying those who do not agree with his will, turning them into adversaries or enemies.

A charismatic politician, with a narrative capable of turning water into wine and social programs into manna, Andrés Manuel López Obrador will end his mandate in September with high levels of acceptance despite the enormous failures of his administration. But it will hardly be enough to achieve the goal of 35 million votes that his presidential candidate Claudia Sheinbaum and her Morena party set for themselves to win the Presidency of the Republic and the absolute majority in the Congress of the Union, as he had in his time in office. gold the PRI.

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By the way…

Specialists from the think tank Ethos Innovation in Public Policies analyzed the proposals of Claudia Sheinbaum, Xóchitl Gálvez and Jorge Álvarez Máynez in the fight against corruption, public finances, adaptation to climate change and care policies.

Regarding the fight against corruption, one of the fundamental issues, Dalia Toledo, director of Public Finance and Anti-Corruption, stated that the current government has not given the expected results: in the Corruption Perception Index, of Transparency International, there is stagnation in 31 points out of 100 possible since 2020. While in the Capacity to Combat Corruption Index, by Américas Society/Council of the Americas and Control Risk, the country’s score has been decreasing each year: in 2019 we obtained 4.56 points out of 10 and in 2024, only 3.87.

Among the causes are the capture and weakening of some institutions, little progress in reducing impunity, appointment of unsuitable profiles for key positions, among others. Furthermore, the budget has been controlled by the government as a weapon to weaken these institutions. For example, this year the Executive Secretariat of the National Anti-Corruption System will receive 40% fewer resources than it received in 2018.

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