José López Portillo
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|José López Portillo
51st President of Mexico
December 1, 1976 – November 30, 1982
|Preceded by||Luis Echeverría|
|Succeeded by||Miguel de la Madrid|
|Secretary of Finance and Public Credit|
May 29, 1973 – September 22, 1975
|President||Luis Echeverría Álvarez|
|Preceded by||Hugo B. Margáin|
|Succeeded by||Mario Ramón Beteta|
|Director of the Comisión Federal de Electricidad|
|Preceded by||Guillermo Villarreal Caravantes|
|Succeeded by||Arsenio Farell Cubillas|
|Born||José Guillermo Abel López Portillo y Pacheco
June 16, 1920
Mexico City, Mexico
|Died||February 17, 2004
Mexico City, Mexico
|Resting place||Cemeterio Militar
Mexico City, Mexico
|Political party||Institutional Revolutionary Party|
|Spouse(s)||Carmen Romano (m. 1951; div. 1991)
Sasha Montenegro (m. 1995)
|Alma mater||National Autonomous University of Mexico|
José Guillermo Abel López Portillo y Pacheco, RSerafO (Spanish pronunciation: [xoˈse ˈlopes porˈtiʝo]; June 16, 1920 – February 17, 2004) was a Mexican lawyer and politician affiliated with Institutional Revolutionary Party (PRI) who served as the 51st President of Mexico from 1976 to 1982.
Early life and education
López Portillo was born in Mexico City, to his father José López Portillo y Weber (1888–1974), an engineer, historian, researcher, and academic, and to Refugio Pacheco y Villa-Gordoa. He was the grandson of José López Portillo y Rojas, a lawyer, politician, and man of letters. He was the great-great-great grandson of José María Narváez (1768–1840), a Spanish explorer who was the first to enter Strait of Georgia, in present-day British Columbia, and the first to view the site now occupied by Vancouver. He studied law at the National Autonomous University of Mexico (UNAM) before beginning his political career.
After graduating, he began his political career with the Institutional Revolutionary Party (PRI) in 1959. He held several positions in the administrations of his two predecessors before being appointed to serve as finance minister under Luis Echeverría, a close friend from childhood, between 1973 and 1975.
López Portillo was elected unopposed in 1976, though in any event the PRI was so entrenched that he was effectively assured of victory when Echeverría chose him as the PRI's candidate. To date, he is the last Mexican president to run unopposed.
When he entered office, Mexico was in the midst of an economic crisis. He undertook an ambitious program to promote Mexico's economic development with revenues stemming from the discovery of new petroleum reserves in the states of Veracruz and Tabasco by Petróleos Mexicanos (Pemex), the country's publicly owned oil company. In 1980, Mexico joined Venezuela in the Pact of San José, a foreign aid project to sell oil at preferential rates to countries in Central America and the Caribbean. According to some, the economic confidence that he fostered led to a short-term boost in economic growth, but by the time he left office, the economy had deteriorated.
López Portillo was the last economic nationalist president to emerge from the ranks of the Institutional Revolutionary Party. Subsequent presidents have all been for free trade (librecambismo).
During his presidential term, his critics accused him of corruption and nepotism.
An electoral reform conducted during his presidential term increased the number of members of the Chamber of Deputies to 400: 300 being elected single-seat constituencies by plurality vote (uninominals) and 100 being elected according to proportional representation (plurinominals). The reform furthermore opened the electoral process for small opposition parties.
In 1981, the Cancun Summit, a North-South dialogue, took place. The summit was attended by 22 heads of state and government from industrialized countries (North) and developing nations (South). During López Portillo’s presidential term, Mexico supported the Sandinista National Liberation Front in Nicaragua. In 1977, after the death of dictator Francisco Franco, Mexico resumed diplomatic relations with Spain. Also, Pope John Paul II visited Mexico for the first time.
In the year leading to the end of his term as president on December 1, 1982, López Portillo personally chose two candidates as possibilities to replace himself, following the succession ritual established by his party. One, Javier García Paniagua, would have been appointed if a man of greater political skill were needed. The other, ultimately his successor, was Miguel de la Madrid, who was chosen for his financial and administrative skills, which were deemed much more necessary after the devaluation of the peso in February 1982 and the subsequent economic crisis.
Personal life and death
López Portillo's first wife was Carmen Romano. However, López Portillo after his presidency divorced Carmen and married in 1995 his longtime partner, the Yugoslavian-born actress Sasha Montenegro. They had two children (Nabila and Alejandro) but later separated.
He was the brother of late Mexican novelist Margarita López Portillo, who died on May 8, 2006, of natural causes.
- Génesis y teoría del Estado moderno (1965).
- Quetzalcóatl (1965).
- Don Q (1975, reimpresiones en 1976 y 1987).
- Ellos vienen... La conquista de México (1987).
- Mis tiempos (2 tomos, 1988).
- Umbrales (1997).
- El súper PRI (2002).
- Knight-Collar of the Order of Isabella the Catholic, Spain (1977-10-07)
- Knight-Collar of the Order of Charles III, Spain (1978)
- Knight of the Royal Order of the Seraphim, Sweden (1980-05-05)
- Delgado de Cantú, Gloria M. (2007). Historia de México Vol. II. Pearson Educación. p. 409.
- Coerver, Don M. (2004). Mexico: An Encyclopedia of Contemporary Culture and History. ABC-CLIO. p. 271.
- Flores Rangel, Juan José (2005). Historia de México. Cengage Learning Editores. p. 519.
- "Nuestro siglo - La Reforma política de 1977". Cámara de Diputados. Retrieved 25 October 2013.
- Flores Rangel, Juan José (2005). Historia de México. Cengage Learning Editores. p. 507.
- Flores Rangel, Juan José (2005). Historia de México. Cengage Learning Editores. p. 525.
- Gunson, Phil. "José López Portillo Mexico's most reviled president". The Guardian. Retrieved 25 October 2013.
- Kandell, Jonathan. "José López Portillo, President When Mexico's Default Set Off Debt Crisis, Dies at 83". The New York Times. Retrieved 25 October 2013.
- "Don Q Jose Lopez Portillo - MercadoLibre México" (in Spanish). Articulo.mercadolibre.com.mx. 2012-04-20. Retrieved 2013-08-01.[permanent dead link]
- "El Universal". El Universal. Archived from the original on October 10, 2012. Retrieved August 1, 2013.
- Royal Decree 2570/1977
- Propuestas, solicitudes y decretos de la Real y muy distinguida Orden de Carlos III
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to José López Portillo.|
- KANDELL, J. José López Portillo, Ex-President of Mexico, Dies at 83 (subscription needed), New York Times February 19, 2004 – article by same author reproduced here 
- Mexico's ex-president Lopez Portillo dies, CNN.com, February 18, 2004.
- GUNSON, P. José López Portillo: Mexico's most reviled president, The Guardian, February 20, 2004.
- ILIFF, L. Few mourn ex-Mexican leader, Dallas Morning News, February 18, 2004 reproduced here 
- DOYLE, Kate (ed.). Prelude to Disaster: José López Portillo and the Crash of 1976, National Security Archive Electronic Briefing Book No. 115.
|President of Mexico
Miguel de la Madrid
|Party political offices|
Luis Echeverría Álvarez
|PRI presidential candidate
Miguel de la Madrid Hurtado