What Type Of Government Does Mexico Have?

The Mexico National Palace in Mexico City. Editorial credit: ChameleonsEye / Shutterstock.com.
The Mexico National Palace in Mexico City. Editorial credit: ChameleonsEye / Shutterstock.com.

Mexico (official name: the United Mexican States) is a federal presidential representative democratic republic where the president is both head of state and head of government. The current government of Mexico is guided by the 1917 constitution. Mexico’s government has three branches, namely the executive branch, legislative branch, and judiciary branch. There is provision for separation of powers, although each branch keeps the other in check.

President Of Mexico

As a federal republic, the President of Mexico is the head of the executive. The president is the commander-in-chief of the armed forces and also the head of state. The President of Mexico is elected by an absolute majority of the 31 states and the federal districts. Mexico’s president is elected for six years and cannot be re-elected. The President is mandated to appoint and dismiss cabinet ministers and nearly all other officials of the executive. The President appoints the federal district’s mayor, ambassadors, magistrates of the Supreme Court, and consuls general. The President further appoints the top officials of the Army, Navy, and Air Force with the approval of the Senate and he/she declares wars with the consent of the Congress of the Union. The Constitution guides the President to grant pardons for convicted criminals.

Legislative Branch Of The Government Of Mexico

Mexico has a bicameral national congress made up of the Senate (upper house) and the Chamber of Deputies (lower house). The Senate consists of 128 members, where two are elected for each state, and 2 represent the federal district. 32 Senators are awarded through the principle of the first minority, while another 32 are elected through proportional representation. Senators serve six-year terms and cannot be elected for the subsequent term. The Chamber of Deputies is made of 500 members. 200 of the deputies are elected through proportional representation, where they represent large plurinominal districts. The rest of the deputies represent single-member districts, and they serve a three-year term. The legislature is mandated to pass legislation and approve the national budget. Congress retains the right to approve Presidential nomination of diplomats and approves or accepts treaties made with other countries. Congress also imposes taxes and declares war. The Legislature appoints an interim president in case of impeachment or death of the sitting President.

Judiciary Of Mexico

The Judiciary is at the helm of Mexico’s judicial system. The arm is comprised of both state and federal legal systems. The highest court in the country is the Supreme Court of Justice, situated in Mexico City and made up of 21 magistrates and five auxiliary judges. The magistrates and judges are appointed by the President to be approved by the Senate. Five judges each head the Court’s five chambers which are: Administrative Affairs Chamber, Labor Affairs Chamber, Penal Affairs Chamber, Civil Affairs Chamber, and Auxiliary Chamber.

Cabinet Of Mexico

18 Secretaries of State are appointed by the President, the head of the federal executive legal office together with the Attorney General make up the Cabinet. The departments include Secretariat of the Interior; Secretariat of Defense; Secretariat of Economy; Secretariat of Energy; Secretariat of Finance and Public Credit, and Secretariat of Health.

Administration Of Mexico

Mexico is governed through a Federal District, which are Mexico City and its immediate regions and 31 states. Each state is governed by its constitution and retains legislative rights and the right to levy taxes excluding interstate customs duties. States are headed by a governor elected for a six-year term. A Superior Court of Justice oversees the state’s judicial system. The Federal District is headed by a mayor and a Representative Assembly. The primary institution of Mexico’s government is the municipality, which provides essential public services such as street lighting, water, and sewerage.


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