Since September, At Least 88 Politicians Have Been Killed In Mexico.
Rallies, bumper stickers, and candidates making lofty promises abound on the Mexican campaign trail. Other aspects, such as the threats, assaults, and murders, are more distinct.
Every election season in this country is marred by political violence, and the run-up to the June 6 midterm elections has been no exception. But this year has been especially brutal, even for a country more accustomed to it than most.
According to the Mexican consulting firm Etellekt Consultores, at least 88 politicians or candidates for office have been killed since September.
According to the FBI, they are among at least 565 politicians or candidates who have been targeted by some form of crime.
Candidates continue to be assassinated.
Abel Murrieta was handing out campaign flyers along a busy street in Cajeme, the municipality where he was running for local office, two weeks ago. The former prosecutor in the northern state of Sonora was with supporters when two men in a vehicle shot him 10 times, according to police.
As a candidate, he consistently stated that combating crime was his top priority.
"Enough with the drugs that steal our children and destroy our families. I'm a law enforcement officer. I'm going to lay down the law. My hand isn't trembling. I'm not scared, "Murrieta stated this in his final campaign ad, which was recorded only one day before his death.
Murrieta was seen lying motionless in a bloodied white button-down shirt after the shooting, one hand on his heaving chest, as a supporter waved his party's flag nearby. Later, a second video showed him being loaded onto a stretcher and taken to an ambulance.
Authorities believe he was deliberately targeted, but they don't know who. An investigation is currently underway.
Murietta was a well-known figure who was known for his outspoken views on crime. As a private attorney, he was also representing the LeBaron family, a dual US-Mexico citizenship family that lost nine members when suspected cartel members murdered them in late 2019.
Another aspiring candidate was gunned down during a campaign event on Tuesday. Alma Rosa Barragán was running for mayor in Moroleón, Guanajuato, one of the most violent states in the country. "If you want to accompany me, come so you can hear my proposals, come so we can coexist for a while.
We can do it better together”, during a Facebook Live broadcast just moments before her death, a cheerful Barragán said. The Attorney General's office in Guanajuato condemned the assassination, and an investigation is now underway.