chapter  2
8 Pages


WithMercedes Medina

Mexico has an area of almost 2 million km² (more than 761,000 square miles), putting it in fifteenth position in the list of countries ranked by area (LOC 2008). As of July 2012, it had close to 115 million people, so it is the most populous nation in the Spanish-speaking world (CIA 2013). Politically speaking, Mexico is a federal, democratic, and representative republic; its government is based on a presidential system according to the 1917 constitution. It is composed of 31 states and one federal district. The constitution establishes three levels of government: the federal union, the state governments, and the municipal governments. Until 2000, the only political party in the government for 71 years was the Institutional Revolutionary Party (PRI). Since then, presidential candidates from other parties have taken power in the general elections, but in 2012, a PRI candidate, Enrique Peña Nieto, once again became president. Prior to 2000, the government centralized the control of the country and had in Televisa, one of the largest media groups, an efficient communication channel to public opinion.