Mexico, like many other developing nations around the world, has a flawed political structure. However, unlike many other parts of the world where people have taken to the streets to try and express their disillusion with the government in place, the people of Mexico have come up with a novel way to voice their discontent with their politicians. And these peaceful protests are centered on putting up animals as nominees for local mayoral elections. Morris the cat is one such mayoral hopeful who is in the running for the top local office in the university city of Xalapa.
Morris is a 10 month old cat who was adopted by Sergio Chamorro, a 35-year-old office worker last year. Chamorro has spun a popular electoral campaign for his orange eyed black-and-white kitten with the slogan “Tired of Voting for Rats? Vote for a Cat”. Morris’ social media pages depict the feline sleeping through the day and not doing anything which Chamorro claims makes him a perfect politician.
Mitofsky polling agency conducted a survey last year which showed that while universities and the church were the most trusted institutions in the country, politicians ranked in the bottom five amongst the 15 instruction that were included in the poll.
Morris, however, isn’t the only animal in the country to be in the running for the prestigious local office. Throughout Mexico, citizens that are wary of the human candidates’ apathy towards the people that elect them into office have been nominating their farm animals and domestic pets for various local offices. So far, as many as four other animals have been nominated for mayoral elections throughout Mexico include Tintan the Dog nominated from Oaxaca City, Maya the Cat in Puebla, Tina the Chicken in Tepic and Chon the Donkey in Ciudad Juarez have joined the electrical race.
However, it appears that the members of Veracruz’s Electoral Institute are not amused by Morris’ growing popularity and have urged voters not to waste their precious votes on a gimmick. Carolina Viveros, the Veracruz electoral institute president, said that she respected the expression of the public’s anguish on social media but asked voters to only vote for candidates that are officially registered for the election.
While the local electoral authorities may not take Morris’ candidature seriously, the voters supporting the feline mayoral hopeful would find solace in the fact that Stubbs the cat has been an honorary mayor in Talkeetna, a remote Alaskan town, for more than 15 years. Stubbs has shown his support for Morris through his Facebook page as well.