Courting Democracy in Mexico

Party Strategies and Electoral Institutions


This book documents Mexico's gradual transition to democracy, written from a perspective which pits opposition activists' post-electoral conflicts against their usage of regime-constructed electoral courts at the centre of the democratization process. It addresses the puzzle of why, during key moments of Mexico's 27-year democratic transition, opposition parties failed to use autonomous electoral courts established to mitigate the country's often violent post-electoral disputes, despite formal guarantees of court independence from the Party of the Institutional Revolution (PRI), Mexico's ruling party for 71 years (preceeding the watershed 2000 presidential elections). Drawing on hundreds of author interviews throughout Mexico over a three-year period and extensive archival research, the author explores choices by the rightist National Action Party (PAN) and the leftist Party of the Democratic Revolution (PRD) between post-electoral conflict resolution via electoral courts and via traditional routes - mobilization and bargaining with the PRI-state.
  • Cambridge University Press; November 2003
  • ISBN: 9780511162398
  • Read online, or download in secure PDF format
  • Title: Courting Democracy in Mexico
  • Author: Todd A. Eisenstadt
  • Imprint: Cambridge University Press

In The Press

"...a detailed and thorough account of the gradual transition to democracy in Mexico that focuses on the roles played by the two main opposition parties...provides a wealth of data...makes important contributions to our understanding of the complex and varied conditions under which democracy can be implemented, especially in his discussion of the interplay between formal and informal institutions." M.T. Kenney, Austin Peay State University, Choice