MEXICO CITY, June 7 (Net) — Mexican Foreign Affairs Secretary Marcelo Ebrard said Tuesday he will resign his position next week to dedicate himself to seeking the nomination of President Andrés Manuel López Obrador’s party to be its presidential candidate in next year’s election.
Ebrard is among three leading aspirants for the presidential nomination of the ruling Morena party.
For months, Ebrard has been juggling his foreign policy duties and pre-campaign activities. At an event in a Mexico City hotel Tuesday, surrounded by supporters, Ebrard said he will resign Monday, June 12 “to dedicate myself fully with happiness and resolve to defend the plan headed by our president.”
The other leading contenders for the party’s nomination are Mexico City Mayor Claudia Sheinbaum and Interior Minister Adán Augusto López.
The party plans to choose its nominee through an internal poll. López Obrador has said he will stay out of the decision, but his comments are watched closely for any sign of favoritism. A fourth member of the party, Sen. Ricardo Monreal, is also seeking the nomination.
López Obrador met with the pre-candidates Monday in an effort to maintain party unity, the president said in his daily news conference Tuesday.
Whomever Morena chooses as its candidate is expected to be the frontrunner in next year’s presidential election.
The party advanced its national status Sunday, when its candidate won the governorship in the State of Mexico, the country’s most populous state.
López Obrador continues to enjoy high approval ratings more than four years into his six-year term.