Mexico, national Popular or citizens initiative [PCI] - Las consultas populares

General Typology

Instrument
Popular or citizens initiative [PCI]
Location
Mexico
Political level
national
Local Name:
Las consultas populares
Normative Level:
constitutional
Legally Binding:
yes
Legally Defined:

Article 35. Rights of citizens: (..)
VIII. To vote in the referendum about national importance topics, which will be subject to the following:
1. They will be called by the Congress of the Union and requested by:
a) The President of the Republic;
b) The equivalent to thirty three percent of the members of any of the Chambers of the Congress of the
Union; or
c) The citizens, in an equivalent number, at least, to two percent of those subscribed in the voters registration list, under the terms set by the law.
With the exception of the hypothesis mentioned in item c) above, the petition should be approved by the majority of each Chamber of the Congress of the Union.
2. When the total participation corresponds, at least, to forty percent of the citizens subscribed in the voters registration list, the result will be binding for the Federal Executive and Legislative powers and for the competent authorities;

References: Constitution of Mexico, 1917, 2019 (Accessed 19.06.2020)

Article 4. The referendum is an instrument of participation by which citizens exercise their right tby means of a free, secret, direct, personal and non-transferable vote, to take part in the decisions on one or more issues of national or regional public authorities with regard to one or more issues of national or regional importance that fall within the competence of the Federation.
Citizens residing abroad may exercise their right to vote in the referendum by means of the mechanisms determined by the Institute, in accordance with the provisions of the General Law.

Article 5. Issues of national or regional transcendence shall be the object of popular consultation.
The national transcendence of the issues proposed for popular consultation shall be qualified by the majority of the legislators present in each House, with the exception of the consultation proposed by citizens, in which case it shall be resolved by the Supreme Court of Justice of the Nation.
The result of the popular consultation is binding for the Executive and Legislative federal powers, as well as for the competent authorities, when the total participation corresponds to at least forty percent of the registered citizens in the nominal list of voters of the corresponding federal entity or entities.

Article 6. It is understood that there is transcendence in the subject proposed for a popular consultation when it contains elements such as:
A. For the National:
I.That have an effect on the greater part of the national territory, and
II.That have an impact on a significant part of the population.
B. For Regional:
I.That have an effect on one or more federative entities, and
II.That have a significant impact on the inhabitants of the state or states in question. in question.

Article 7. Voting in the popular consultations is a right and an obligation of the citizens to participate in the decision making on issues of national or regional transcendence within the competence of the Federation.

Article 8. The popular consultations called by the Congress shall be held on the first Sunday of August. 

Article 9. For the purposes of this Law, the following shall be understood:
I.Notice of intention: Format by means of which the citizens express their will to the corresponding Chamber to submit a petition for a popular consultation.
II.General Law: General Law of Electoral Institutions and Procedures;
III. Congress: General Congress of the United Mexican States;
IV. Constitution: Political Constitution of the United Mexican States;
V. Call: Call for popular consultation issued by the Congress of the Union;
VI. Institute: National Electoral Institute;
VII. Supreme Court: Supreme Court of Justice of the Nation;
VIII. Electoral Tribunal: Electoral Tribunal of the Judicial Power of the Federation.

Article 11. The following may not be subject to popular consultation:
I. The restriction of human rights recognized by the Constitution and the respective international treaties to which the Mexican State is a party.
II.The principles enshrined in Article 40 of the Constitution;
III.The permanence or continuity in office of popularly elected public servants;
IV. Electoral matters;
V. The financial system, income, expenditures and the Expenditure Budget of the Federation;
VI. Infrastructure works in progress;
VII. National security; and
VIII. The organization, operation and discipline of the permanent Armed Forces.

Article 12. The following may request a referendum:
I.The President of the Republic;
II.The equivalent of thirty-three per cent of the members of any of the Houses of Congress; or
III.The citizens in a number equivalent to at least two percent of the persons registered on the nominal list of electors, in the case of issues of national importance, and the same percentage of the persons registered on the nominal list of electors corresponding to the corresponding federal entity or entities, in the case of issues related to the regional importance within the competence of the Federation.

Citizens may support more than one referendum, but referendums which are supported by the same citizens shall not be processed if the signatures of support exceed 20% of the those. In this case, only the first petition shall be admissible. The failure to comply with the prohibition referred to in the previous paragraph shall be resolved in accordance with the rules set out in Article 34, section IV of this Law. When the request comes from any of those referred to in Sections I and II of this Article, it shall be subject to the approval of the majority of each House of the Congress of the Union.

Article 13. The petition for popular consultation may be submitted to the Houses of Congress, as appropriate, under the terms of this Law, until the thirtieth day of November of the year immediately prior to the year in which the consultation is to be held.

Article 14. The citizens who wish to submit a petition for a referendum for the following voting date shall give Notice of Intent to the Presidency of the Presiding Officers of the corresponding House through the format determined for such purpose by said House, which shall be kept available to the general public in physical form and on its web page. The President of the Board of the corresponding Chamber shall issue within a term not exceeding ten business days, a certificate evidencing the presentation of the Notice of Intent, which shall be accompanied by the format for obtaining signatures and with it the beginning of the acts to collect the support signatures. The certificates of notice shall be published in the Parliamentary Gazette. The certificates and forms issued pursuant to the preceding paragraphs may only be used in the popular consultation petition process for which the Notice of Intent is filed.

Article 15. The format for obtaining signatures shall be determined by the Chambers of the Congress of the Union, after consultation with the Institute, ensuring that it complies with the requirements set out in this Law and that it shall contain at least
I. The issue of national or regional importance within the competence of the Federation;
II.The proposed question;
III.The folio number of each page if printed;
IV. The name, signature, voter code or identifying number on the back of the voter's credential derived from the optical character recognition (OCR) of the valid photo voter's credential, and
V. The date of issue.
If the signatures are presented in a format other than that submitted by the Chambers, the Popular Consultation proposal shall not be admitted for processing. The Presidency of the Presiding Officers of the corresponding House shall take account of the Notices of Intention that have not been formalised with the presentation of the request for a referendum within the period established by Article 13 of this Law or that have not been submitted in the corresponding format for the collection of signatures, which shall be filed as matters that have been totally and definitively concluded. Once defined by the Chambers of the Congress of the Union, the formats for the Notice of Intent and for obtaining citizen signatures shall be permanently valid. Any modification to the formats shall be made no later than the thirty-first of March of the year in which they are intended to be applied in the popular consultation petition processes. In accordance with the information referred to in the first paragraph of this article, the Chambers of the Congress of the Union, in prior consultation with the Institute, may implement the use of technological instruments from among the formats defined for obtaining citizen signatures, when these facilitate citizen access to the exercise of the constitutional right to petition for popular consultation.

Article 20. The request submitted by citizens shall be presented to the Presiding Officers of either House, in accordance with Section Two of this Chapter.

Article 21. All petitions for popular consultation shall be contained in a written document that shall comply, at least, with the following elements:
I.Full name and signature of the petitioner or petitioners;
II.The purpose of the consultation and the reasons why the issue is considered to be of national or regional importance, whichever is the competence of the Federation, as the case may be,
III. The question proposed for the consultation shall be drafted without biased content or value judgements and formulated in such a way as to produce a categorical answer in the positive or negative sense; and it shall be related to the subject of the consultation.
Only one question may be asked in the referendum petition.

Article 23. In addition to the requirements set out in Article 21 of this Law, applications from citizens shall be supplemented with Article 21 of this Law, must be supplemented with:
I. Full name and address of the representative to receive notifications, and
II. Annex containing the full names of the citizens and their signatures, in addition to the voter code and the identifying number on the back of the voter's credential derived from the optical character recognition (OCR) of the valid photo voter's card.

Article 25. When the written request for a referendum does not indicate the name of the representative, is illegible or does not include any supporting signature, the relevant Chamber shall warn the petitioners to rectify the errors or omissions mentioned above within a period of three calendar days, counted from the date of notification. In the event of failure to rectify the errors or omissions within the established period, the application shall be deemed not to have been submitted.

Article 25. When the written request for a referendum does not indicate the name of the representative, is illegible or does not include any supporting signature, the relevant Chamber shall warn the petitioners to rectify the errors or omissions mentioned above within a period of three calendar days, counted from the date of notification. In the event of failure to rectify the errors or omissions within the established period, the application shall be deemed not to have been submitted. 

Article 28. When the petition comes from citizens, the following procedure shall be followed:
I. Once the petition has been received by the Presidency of the Presiding Officers of the corresponding House, it shall publish it in its Gazette, report on it and request the Institute to verify, within a period of thirty calendar days, that it has been signed in accordance with the parameters established in Article 35, section VIII, paragraph 1, subsection c) of the Federal Constitution and section III of Article 12 of this Law;
II. In the event that the Institute determines that it does not comply with the requirement indicated in the previous section, and once this determination has become final in the face of any challenge or once the deadline for it to be presented has expired, the Presidency of the Presiding Officers of the corresponding Chamber shall publish the report in its Gazette, report on it and proceed to file it as a totally and definitively concluded matter;
III. In the event that the Institute determines that the requirement established in section I has been met, the President of the Presiding Officers of the President of the Presiding Officers of the appropriate House shall publish the report in the Parliamentary Gazette and shall send the petition to the Supreme Court, together with the proposed question of the petitioners for a ruling on its constitutionality within a period of twenty calendar days;
IV. Upon receipt of the request, the Presidency of the Presiding Officers of the House of Representatives of the corresponding Chamber shall verify the constitutionality of the popular consultation petition, the Supreme Court shall:
(a) Rule on the constitutionality of the subject matter of the popular consultation and review that the question derives directly from the subject matter of the consultation; is not biased or contains value judgements; employs neutral, simple, understandable language and, where appropriate, its accessibility and translation into indigenous languages and produces, a categorical answer in a positive or negative manner.
b) Make, where appropriate, the necessary modifications to the question, in order to guarantee that it is congruent with the subject matter of the consultation and complies with the criteria set out in the previous paragraph. the previous paragraph.
c) Notify the corresponding Chamber of its resolution within twenty-four hours;
V. If the resolution of the Supreme Court is to recognise the constitutionality of the matter, the question contained in the resolution may not be the subject of subsequent amendments by Congress;
VI. In the event that the Supreme Court declares the subject matter of the popular consultation to be unconstitutional, the Presidency of the Presiding Officers of the corresponding House of Representatives shall publish the resolution in its Gazette, and shall report and proceed to file it as a totally and definitively concluded matter.
VII. Once the constitutionality has been declared by the Supreme Court, the Congress, through its Presiding Officers, shall issue the summons, notify it to the Institute for the appropriate effects, and order its publication in the Official Gazette of the Federation. 

Article 29. The decisions of the Supreme Court shall be final and unassailable.

Article 30. The call for popular consultation shall contain:
I.Applicable legal grounds;
II.The date on which the referendum is to be held;
III. A brief description of the subject matter of the issue of national or regional importance, which falls within the competence of the Federation and which is submitted to consultation;
IV. The question to be consulted, and
V. Place and date of issue of the Call for Consultation. 

Article 31. The Call issued by the Congress shall be published in the Official Gazette of the Federation.

Article 33. The Institute, through the Executive Directorate of the Federal Register of Voters, within the period referred to in the previous article, shall verify that the names of those who have subscribed to the popular consultation appear on the nominal lists of electors and that the sum corresponds to a number equivalent to at least two per cent of the nominal list of electors.
Once the percentage requirement referred to in the previous paragraph has been reached, the Executive Directorate of the Federal Voters' Register shall carry out a sampling exercise to corroborate the authenticity of the signatures in accordance with the authenticity of the signatures in accordance with the criteria defined by the Executive Directorate itself. (..) 

Article 35. The Institute is responsible for the exercise of the state function of the organisation and development of the popular consultations and for carrying out the promotion of the vote, in terms of this Law and the General Law.

Article 40. During the dissemination campaign, the Institute shall promote the participation of citizens in the referendum through the radio and television time allocated to the electoral authority. The promotion shall be impartial. In no way may it be aimed at influencing the preferences of the citizenry, in favour of or against the referendum.

Article 43. For the casting of votes in the popular consultation processes, the Institute shall design the form in accordance with the model and content approved by the General Council and it shall contain the following information
I.A brief description of the subject of the consultation;
II.The question contained in the Convocatoria approved by the Congress;
III.Boxes for "YES", "NO" and "ABSTAIN", placed symmetrically and in an appropriate size for easy identification by the Congress; IV. appropriate size to facilitate their identification by the citizen at the time of casting his vote;
IV. Entity and district, and
V. Security measures to be determined by the General Council. There shall be only one single form, regardless of the number of convocations which have been approved by the Congress.

References: LEY FEDERAL DE CONSULTA POPULAR, 2014 (2021); (accessed January 10. 2023)

Subject Matter:

To call a referendum on issues of national importance

Actors

Author:
Citicens
Initiator:
Citizens
Decision maker:
Electorate

Requirements

Number Of Signatures:
2% of electorate
Available Time:
See Art. 13 of the law
Turnout Quorum:
Total participation corresponds, at least forty percent of the citizens subscribed in the voters registration list, the result will be binding for the Federal Executive and Legislative powers and for the competent authorities;
Approval Quorum:
Legal source does not mention special approval quorum
Geographical Quorum:
Legal source does not mention geographical quorum
Excluded Issues:

Article 11. The following may not be subject to popular consultation:
I. The restriction of human rights recognized by the Constitution and the respective international treaties to which the Mexican State is a party.
II.The principles enshrined in Article 40 of the Constitution;
III.The permanence or continuity in office of popularly elected public servants;
IV. Electoral matters;
V. The financial system, income, expenditures and the Expenditure Budget of the Federation;
VI. Infrastructure works in progress;
VII. National security; and
VIII. The organization, operation and discipline of the permanent Armed Forces.

Other Formal Requirements:

Procedural Elements

Collection Mode:
free
Specify Collection Mode:

Article 15. The format for obtaining signatures shall be determined by the Chambers of the Congress of the Union, after consultation with the Institute, ensuring that it complies with the requirements set out in this Law and that it shall contain at least
I. The issue of national or regional importance within the competence of the Federation;
II.The proposed question;
III.The folio number of each page if printed;
IV. The name, signature, voter code or identifying number on the back of the voter's credential derived from the optical character recognition (OCR) of the valid photo voter's credential, and
V. The date of issue.
If the signatures are presented in a format other than that submitted by the Chambers, the Popular Consultation proposal shall not be admitted for processing. The Presidency of the Presiding Officers of the corresponding House shall take account of the Notices of Intention that have not been formalised with the presentation of the request for a referendum within the period established by Article 13 of this Law or that have not been submitted in the corresponding format for the collection of signatures, which shall be filed as matters that have been totally and definitively concluded. Once defined by the Chambers of the Congress of the Union, the formats for the Notice of Intent and for obtaining citizen signatures shall be permanently valid. Any modification to the formats shall be made no later than the thirty-first of March of the year in which they are intended to be applied in the popular consultation petition processes. In accordance with the information referred to in the first paragraph of this article, the Chambers of the Congress of the Union, in prior consultation with the Institute, may implement the use of technological instruments from among the formats defined for obtaining citizen signatures, when these facilitate citizen access to the exercise of the constitutional right to petition for popular consultation.

Article 20. The request submitted by citizens shall be presented to the Presiding Officers of either House, in accordance with Section Two of this Chapter.

Wording Of Ballot Question:

".. the Supreme Court shall:
(a) Rule on the constitutionality of the subject matter of the popular consultation and review that the question derives directly from the subject matter of the consultation; is not biased or contains value judgements; employs neutral, simple, understandable language and, where appropriate, its accessibility and translation into indigenous languages and produces, a categorical answer in a positive or negative manner."

References: LEY FEDERAL DE CONSULTA POPULAR, 2014 (2021); (accessed January 10. 2023)

Interaction With Authorities:
Supervision And Support:
Transparency And Finance:

Practice

Archive:
Remarks:

The English version here is a courtesy translation.