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EXCLUSIVE: Mexican Border State Governor-Elect Promises to Take On Cartels, Fight Corruption

The newly elected governor in the border state of Tamaulipas has promised to take on cartels, fight corruption and regain the trust of the business and law enforcement partners the state has with Texas and the rest of the nation.

“The State of Texas will play a big role as a partner in reshaping Tamaulipas from a land ravaged by corrupt politicians into a state with security, opportunity and becoming a major player in commerce and energy,” Cabeza de Vaca said in an exclusive interview with Breitbart Texas.

On Sunday a record number of citizens in the border state of Tamaulipas turned out to vote out the previous ruling party known as the Revolutionary Institutional Party (PRI) in favor of Governor-elect Francisco Garcia Cabeza de Vaca from the National Action Party (PAN).

“This is a fight between a regime that has been in power for 86 years with the same political establishment that wants to keep Tamaulipas under submission, and on the other hand, a society that is tired and demands a change,” Cabeza de Vaca said. 

As part of his campaign Cabeza de Vaca began using a hand sign resembling a cow’s head as a play on words on his last name that is loosely translated to cow’s head. That hand sign has become a trending salute among his supporters.

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As Breitbart Texas has been consistently reporting, the PRI in Tamaulipas has a long history of corruption and allegations of working hand in hand with Mexican drug cartels. Two former governors, Eugenio Hernandez and Tomas Yarrington, from that state are currently listed as fugitives by the U.S. Department of Justice on money laundering charges in relation to taking bribes from drug cartels.

Even tough he is wanted in the U.S., Hernandez Flores  made a public appearance in Ciudad Victoria, the state capital, when he arrived to a polling location to vote. Under a sea of cameras, Hernandez said that Tamaulipas would always be a PRI state and that his friend Hinojosa would make a great governor.

“The public safety problem in Tamaulipas is not caused by coincidence, it was caused by the irresponsibility of those bad governments and a political class of which the PRI candidate is a part,” Cabeza de Vaca said. “They are part of the criminal empire created by Tomas Yarrington that turned Tamaulipas over to the hands of organized crime. We are going to end Narco-politics.”

On Sunday afternoon, the leadership of the PRI in Tamaulipas along with Hinojosa, held a press conference that was streamed online where loud clapping and cheering was heard as they declared themselves the winners of the election. A news release issued out by the PRI claimed that based on their own statistics and exit polls Baltazar Hinojosa was the governor-elect of Tamaulipas.

The claims of victory by the PRI were contradicted by the actual results of the polls. According to the information posted by the Tamaulipas Electoral Institute IEETAM, Cabeza de Vaca appeared to defeat Hinojosa by a wide margin.

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“That they are leaving they are leaving,” said Cabeza de Vaca. “The time for the corrupt governments will come to an end … it’s the first time in 86 years that an opposition candidate is ahead … we will have a peaceful change.”

Breitbart Texas had to opportunity to speak with Cabeza de Vaca about how he plans on delivering the promises of restoring public safety to his border state.

“We can not talk about business development, investment, and the creation of wealth if we do not address the security concerns first,” he said.

American law enforcement will play a big factor in not only helping Tamaulipas obtain a true police force, but also in working hand in hand on border security and other matters, he said. The governor-elect said his goal is to restore the trust that has been lost.

“We are going to have the best police force that this state has ever seen,” he said. “The will be well equipped, well trained but most all certified and vetted. The training will not be in Mexico. It will be in the United States. There they have the most respected academies in the world.”

In addition to building his police force, Cabeza de Vaca said he will work to keep them honest by giving them something to fight for.

As new police officers they would received a “good salary” and multiple benefits that include life insurance, medical insurance, scholarships for their children and homebuyers credits.

“They will have dignified home, that way they can feel proud of themselves, of what they have accomplished, and have something to loose,” Cabeza de Vaca said. “Right now they have nothing to loose. We want them to not even think about getting involved with crime and to feel that their only commitment is with the families in Tamaulipas.”

Another part of his law enforcement plan deals with having U.S. law enforcement investigate and have a vetting process for the next Tamaulipas Attorney General.

“He will not be a friend or acquaintance of the governor,” Cabeza de Vaca said. “The name of that person will come from the citizens themselves.” 

During the first year to year to 18 months that he is able to build his police force, Cabeza de Vaca will rely on the Mexican Military (army) and the Mexican Navy (marine infantry) as temporary law enforcement.

“Not by chance, I was the president of the National Security Commission in the Mexican Senate, and I am the Secretary of the Navy Commission in the Senate,” he said. “Those are the two institutions (army and navy) that have gained the trust of the citizens of this state and when called on, they have been there.”

On the business development side, Cabeza de Vaca said he will push to bring back investors and foster the energy industry in his state.

“Just like Texas has a big energy field, Tamaulipas has one waiting to develop,” Cabeza de Vaca said. “We will restore peace and order to regain the trust of businessmen and investors.”

One of the key investment moves will be to have a Tamaulipas Trade Office in San Antonio to develop joint ventures and businesses proposals between U.S. and Mexican individuals and companies.

“We are going to be friends, neighbors and partners,” Cabeza de Vaca said. 

Ildefonso Ortiz is an award winning journalist with Breitbart Texas you can follow him on Twitter and on Facebook.

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