Jul 12, 2011, 9:47 PM
Post #1 of 2
I don't think anyone noticed, but the Mexican Constitution was amended recently, in several places, expanding the right to amparo (injunctive relief) which probably is not all that relevant to most of us, and greatly expanding human rights protections, which should be, since we're all human... right? There was some controversy (mostly, as you'd esxpect from PAN) that held up the final approval... over modifying the word "preferencias" as "preferencias sexuales" in Article 1... and because several wording changes now makes the government culpable not only for actions that violate human rights, but for omissions as well. That's a HUGE difference, meaning citizens have the right to go to court to demand the state proactively protect their basic rights.
Interestingly, in light of U.S. political claims that it can ignore treaty obligations (or, at least that a state can), the Constitution specifically states that Mexico is bound by the human rights obligations under any treaty it has signed. The article relating to foreigners (Art. 33) has an important change we probably all need to be aware of. The old version said that persons not covered under Art. 30 (citizens by birth, or naturalized citizens) had the same Article 1 rights BUT the executive branch could expel anyone it wanted, and foreigners had no right to participate in national politics.
Which was clear as mud. The revised Article 33 (in my quick and dirty translation) says:
Foreigners who do not possess the qualifications set out in Article 30 shall enjoy the constitutional and human rights and guarantees recognized by this Constitution.
The Executive of the Union, after a hearing, may expel the foreigner from the country on the basis of the law which regulates the administrative procedure, location and duration of detention.
Foreigners may not in any way interfere in the political affairs of the country. In other words, while we still have no right to be involved in Mexican politics, we cannot be expelled without an administrative hearing. Those of us who are undocumented aliens (or know people who are) might note that Mexico is a signatory to the Vienna Convention on Consular Rights, so at least in theory, this should mean that even if you are picked up on an immigration violation you have the right to contact your consulate. And have a hearing... though, if you're an undesirable alien, you're still likely to be deported.
For those interested, the Supreme Court has a nifty detailed examination of the changes here.
(This post was edited by richmx2 on Jul 12, 2011, 9:56 PM)