Mexican president-elect Sheinbaum announces first picks for her cabinet

Many members are holdovers from the current administration, though they mostly have taken on new roles.

By Sarah AschJune 21, 2024 10:24 am,

Mexico’s president-elect, Claudia Sheinbaum, announced the first nominations to her presidential cabinet on Thursday. 

The newly-appointed cabinet members will begin their positions when Sheinbaum officially assumes the presidency on October 1. 

Stephania Corpi, who has been covering this race for Texas Public Radio, among other outlets, said there were not a lot of surprises in the names announced.

“The one and only surprise is that she’s creating a new secretariat about science and technology. This is brand new,” Corpi said. “Most of the people that are going to be working with her – half of them, at least – were in Andrés Manuel López Obrador’s cabinet.”

» RELATED: For Mexican President-elect Claudia Sheinbaum, continuity may not be an option

Despite the overlap in cabinet officials, Corpi said many people will be switching roles. 

“Marcelo Ebrard is going to be the Secretary of Economy, which is, I think, a surprise,” Corpi said. “And Alicia Bárcena is going to be Secretary of the Environment, which is very surprising because she’s got a long career in foreign affairs, and her work has been amazing with the whole thing with the Ecuadorian embassy. So most people thought she was going to stay in the same position.

The only one that’s staying is the one from finance, Rogelio Ramirez de la O. And, I think it’s good for the country because it talks about continuity and having the markets stabilize.”  

That being said, Corpi said the new foreign affairs secretary, Juan Ramon de la Fuente, also has a lot of experience.

“He was appointed to the United Nations, he knows what this government’s looking for, and he has a lot of experience. So I think he was the appointee because he knows how to handle especially the relationship with the U.S.,” Corpi said.

“If we go back to the Trump/AMLO relationship… the new NAFTA was part of the discussion. Migration has also been a huge issue here. So I think he knows what he can discuss with his colleagues in the U.S.”

» RELATED: What does Claudia Sheinbaum’s election in Mexico mean for the future?

Those appointed to cabinet positions will help with the transition into Sheinbaum’s administration.

“They’re supposed to be doing the transition between those who are in power right now and the new presidency that’s going to be coming in October,” she said. “President Andrés Manuel López Obrador was very clear, and he wants lots of reformation in the constitution, fiscal reforms, especially to go through the Senate before he leaves. So I think these people are also going to be kind of helping to do this task.”

However, Corpi said she doesn’t see a big change in U.S./Mexico relations based on these cabinet picks.

“Negotiations about migration will be a big part of the agenda, even though the Mexican government hasn’t really talked about what their policy is going to be,” she said.

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