Who is Claudia Sheinbaum, Mexico's first potential female President?

Sweta Gupta
Sweta GuptaSep 08, 2023 | 13:40

Who is Claudia Sheinbaum, Mexico's first potential female President?

Sheinbaum's nomination inches Mexico closer to its first female President in 2024 (Photo Credits: Getty Images)

Claudia Sheinbaum, a 61-year-old scientist-turned-politician, has been officially chosen as the candidate for Mexico's governing Morena party in the upcoming Presidential election.

This development comes after both Morena and the opposition coalition selected women as their candidates. Her nomination brings Mexico one step closer to electing its first female President in 2024.

Sheinbaum is a former mayor of Mexico City and a close ally of President Andrés Manuel López Obrador.


With President López Obrador ineligible for re-election due to Mexico's constitution, Sheinbaum's candidacy marks a significant milestone in the country's political landscape.

Who is Claudia Sheinbaum?

  • Born in 1962 in Mexico City, Sheinbaum has a background in physics and holds a Ph.D. in energy engineering.
  • She previously served as the city's secretary of the environment in 2000 when Andrés Manuel López Obrador was the mayor.
  • She has maintained a close relationship with him and supported him in his presidential campaigns.
  • The climate scientist-turned-politician is widely viewed as President Obrador's favored candidate.
  • She will run in the June election, as Mexico's constitution prevents outgoing President Andrés Manuel López Obrador from seeking re-election.


  • Sheinbaum won the party's nomination by a significant margin in five party surveys.
  • She has been a vocal critic of past neoliberal economic policies in Mexico.
  • Sheinbaum is committed to sustainability and renewable energy.
  • She took proactive measures in response to the early days of the COVID-19 pandemic, including implementing safety measures.
  • Sheinbaum faced criticism for her handling of the Mexico City subway system following a collapse in May 2021.

The opposition 

While Morena initially seemed likely to win the June 2024 elections, the emergence of Senator Xóchitl Gálvez as the opposition candidate in recent months has changed the political landscape.

  • Xóchitl Gálvez is a senator who was nominated by the opposition coalition as their candidate for the 2024 general election in Mexico.
  • Gálvez comes from humble beginnings and was able to study computer engineering after winning a scholarship.
  • She later pursued a career as a businesswoman.

"The presidency is not inherited with an Imperial Scepter; the people provide, and the people take away," said Gálvez.

  • From 2015 to 2018, she served as the mayor of the Miguel Hidalgo borough in Mexico City.

  • In 2018, she won a seat in the Senate for the National Action Party (PAN), one of the opposition parties.


Gálvez's nomination was announced by the coalition "Frente Amplio Por México," which consists of three opposition parties: PAN, the Democratic Revolution Party (PRD), and the Institutional Revolutionary Party (PRI).

On the other hand, Marcelo Ebrard, the runner-up for Morena, accused the party of showing favoritism towards Sheinbaum.

He claimed to have found irregularities in 14% of the ballots in Morena's national poll to select the candidate, but his request for a redo was denied, and he withdrew from contention.

On September 6, it was officially confirmed that she would be Morena's candidate after winning in all five coalition surveys, with 39 percent support compared to Marcelo Ebrard's 26 percent.

President López Obrador dismissed Ebrard's complaints and fully supported Sheinbaum, calling her an "honest woman with convictions and principles."

With both candidates now confirmed, it appears highly likely that Mexico will have its first female president in its history.

Last updated: September 08, 2023 | 13:40
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