What Type of Government Does Mexico Have?

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Mexico is considered a federal representative democratic republic. Like the United States, Mexico has three branches of government: executive, legislative and judiciary. The president of Mexico serves for six years and cannot be re-elected.

How Mexico’s Federal Republic Works A federal republic relies on a centralized federal government but gives power to each individual state to run its own affairs. Mexico is governed by the administration of Mexico, a federal district comprised of Mexico City and the region immediately surrounding it, and 31 other states. Each state has its own constitution and levies its own taxes. Each state, in turn, is run by a governor, who like the president, is elected to a six-year term. Each state also has its own Supreme Court of Justice that oversees the individual state’s judicial system. In addition, the Federal District is also headed by a mayor, in addition to a representative assembly.

Executive Branch The executive branch of the Mexican government is led by the president, who is elected for a single term. The president also appoints the cabinet of Mexico, 18 secretaries who include the attorney general, and secretariats of the Interior, Defense, Economy, Energy, Health and Finance and Public Credit departments. The president, as the leader of Mexico, is also country’s armed forces’ commander-in-chief. The president is also responsible for appointing the mayor of the Federal District, various ambassadors and the magistrates of the Supreme Court of Justice. The president also holds the power to appoint the leaders of the country’s armed forces, with the approval of the Senate. The president must also get the approval of the Congress of the Union to go to war.

Legislative Branch The Mexican legislative branch is made up of the Senate, or the upper house, and the Chamber of Deputies, or the lower house. Each state, as well as the Federal District, has two elected senators, 1 assigned senator, and 32 national senators divided up according to the national vote, for a total of 128 members. Senators can serve only one six-year term. The Chamber of Deputies has 500 members, with 200 elected through proportional representation with the rest directly elected from single-member districts. Members of the Chamber of Deputies can only serve three-year terms. The duties of the legislature include passing a budget each year, approving presidential nominations, imposing taxes and declaring war.

Judiciary Branch Made up of both the state and federal judiciary system, the judiciary branch of the Mexican government make rulings on various interpretations of the law, further clarifying how a law works or even the constitutionality of a law in some cases but can only apply such rulings in individual cases. The courts can use a powerful judicial instrument called a writ of Amparo, which helps protect the right to life, liberty and security of individuals when threatened by the unlawful act of any government official, including the president. The highest court, the Supreme Court of Justice, resides in Mexico City. All of the Supreme Court of Justice officials, consisting of five auxiliary judges and 21 magistrates, are appointed by the president but must get confirmation from the Senate. Other judiciary institutions include the Electoral Tribunal and the Council of the Federal Judiciary. The judges of the Supreme Court of Justice serve a single 15-year term.