Government secretary reaffirms loyalty to President; resignation reveals deep splits in PAN

Gómez Mont stressed on several occasions that he would continue to work for the President’s agenda, even after his break with the party. “President Calderón and I are in constant communication; we each have our own points of view. He is the President, and I am the Government Secretary, and I serve the President,” he said at a law forum. His resignation reverberated within the party. Former president Vicente Fox and former party president Manuel Espino said Gómez Mont did the right thing. Former presidential candidate Diego Fernández de Cevallos said the PRD and PAN were irreconcilable on fundamental issues such as abortion and gay marriage. Fernández said the PAN could beat the PRI on its own, “if we have leaders of stature who behave in ways that merit respect.”

Nonetheless, the PAN National Council endorsed the electoral coalitions already approved by the central committee. Absent from the Council meeting were President Calderón, Fox, Espino, and congressional leader Josefina Vázquez Mota. While a number of current PAN senators voiced support for keeping Gómez Mont in the cabinet, there is constant speculation of how long he will remain in the cabinet. President Calderón has avoided comment on the controversy. (Universal 2/12)

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