FILE – Mexican President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador speaks at the National Palace in Mexico City, Jan. 10, 2023. On July 14, 2023, Mexico’s president continued with attacks against Xóchitl Gálvez, the opposition front-runner for the 2024 presidential elections despite a ruling by electoral authorities that he has been violating equity and neutrality rules with such comments. (AP Photo/Fernando Llano, File)The Associated Press

Now the big question is whether the opposition finally struck gold or if what’s been termed “Xóchitl-mania” is a flash in the pan. After all, the opposition has struggled in the face of AMLO’s popularity and populist message to come up with names that could be considered competitive against his perceived favorite, former Mexico City Mayor Claudia Sheinbaum, or ex-Foreign Minister Marcelo Ebrard. The two candidates from AMLO’s governing Morena party have long led polling to replace him when his six-year term ends next year.

Then Gálvez, 60, arrived on the scene, riding her bike and donning a traditional Indigenous huipil blouse with a personal story that differentiates her from the Mexican political elites AMLO often rails against. Born into humble, Indigenous origins in a small town in the state of Hidalgo, Gálvez—whose first name means “flower” in Nahuatl—overcame having an alcoholic, violent father to become a self-made woman. She earned a degree in computer engineering and founded two tech firms before entering politics as the head of the National Institute of Indigenous Peoples during the administration of Vicente Fox (2000–2006). Despite representing the conservative National Action Party (PAN) in her current role as senator, she backs progressive policies on issues such as the environment, abortion and LGBTQ+ rights. And she’s managed to steer clear of corruption scandals in a country where many traditional politicians are tainted.

Mexican president continues attacking opposition candidate, despite electoral agency’s order to stop

Mexico’s president plowed ahead with attacks against the opposition front-runner for the 2024 presidential elections despite a ruling by electoral authorities that he had violated equity and neutrality rules

The Associated PressJuly 14, 2023, 1:26 PM ET

President Andrés Manuel López Obrador’s war of words with the plain-talking senator and former indigenous affairs official, Xóchitl Gálvez, escalated to its highest level yet Friday, when he likened her to a mafia leader and she accused him of illegally leaking confidential tax information about her businesses.