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Mexico's Democratic Consolidation

            The Mexican United States is a democracy. As demanded by Juan Linz and Alfred Stepan, Mexico is an existing state, it holds free and contested elections, and its leaders rule as democratically as they are demanded to by the Mexican Constitution. Mexico's transition to democracy was best demonstrated in the election of 2000 as the people voted out a 70 year-long semi-authoritarian rule by the Institutional Revolutionary Party. Having specified threshold for democracy and determining Mexico meets its criteria, the nest step of determining the status of the regime's consolidation can be considered.
             Up until the election of 2000, Mexico was not yet a consolidated democracy. However, when Vicente Fox of the National Action Party (PAN) was elected President of Mexico, it marked the end of 71 years of continuous rule of the executive branch by the Institutional Revolutionary Party (PRI). This event finalized a long process of regime change from one-party authoritarian rule to a democracy in Mexico. (Barracca) Now, even though it is clear Mexico has gone through a transition to Democracy and even through major consolidation, the state of its democracy is not yet deep enough and is arguably not even complete in its consolidation. When putting the Freedom House rating system to use, the definition of consolidation democracy can become operationalized. Freedom House has ranked all independent countries from 1 (the best score) to 7 on civil liberties and political rights. With the two scores combined, the result is a scale that assigns countries a number from 2 to 14. Countries with scores from 2 to 5 I classify as democracies. Regimes with scores from 6 to 8 classify as semi-authoritarian. Countries with scores from 9 to 14 are authoritarian.
             From 1972 to 1999, Mexico received a combined Freedom House score of either a 7 or 8, putting it in the semi-authoritarian category. In 2000, Mexico crossed the democratic threshold, being assigned a value of 5 (2 for political rights and a 3 for civil liberties), a score it received again in 2001.

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