The process to vote on the electrical reform of President Andrés Manuel López Obrador has begun in the Chamber of Deputies. Yesterday the bill began to circulate among the legislators without in-depth modifications that indicate a change in the purpose of the initiative.
Morena, the president’s party has already made public a calendar and hopes to vote on the initiative in Deputies as soon as the following week, that the president’s project arrives during the third week in the Senate, and be voted on before the end of this legislature, the April 30th.
The opposition parties have already closed ranks and have said that they will vote against the document, they have also already presented their own initiative. If it goes to the plenary session during the following week, analysts have assured that the document has little chance of being voted favorably.
What is needed for the electricity reform to be approved?
Morena needs 57 extra votes in the Chamber of Deputies, beyond her legislators and her allies, for the document to pass. The PRI was emerging as the parliamentary fraction that could give the president victory in Congress, but the possibilities seem to be diluted.
Now that the opinion is already circulating among the legislators, the next step is for it to be approved in Commissions. Its discussion and eventual approval – a step before it goes up to the plenary session – is planned for next Monday. Meanwhile, in these days the legislators would have to discuss the content of the proposal, present reservations and define their vote.
Analysts do not see major problems in the document passing favorably through this step, since Morena has the majority in Commissions.
Morena’s calendar indicates that the initiative should go to plenary on Wednesday of next week, one day before the Easter holidays. The vote and discussion could be as long or as short as the legislators decide. The document will be voted on in general and in particular, the parties will be able to present their reservations and this will be the last opportunity in Deputies for the document to have any changes.
What happens if it is approved in the Chamber of Deputies?
If approved, the next step is the Senate, the bill’s review body. Ricardo Monreal, the president of the Political Coordination Board in the Senate, has opened the door to make changes to the initiative to add certainty to investors and avoid problems related to international treaties. But the signs are not yet clear.
Morena in the Senate needs eight votes to approve the document. Analysts see a more complicated environment in the upper house. The president’s party would need to convince the legislators of Movimiento Ciudadano and the plural group in the Senate, which includes legislators such as Emilio Álvarez Icaza.