Division of Powers
Article 49.The supreme power of the Federation is divided, for its exercise, into legislative, executive, and judicial branches.
Two or more of these powers shall never be united in one single person or corporation, nor shall the legislative power be vested in one individual except in the case of extraordinary powers granted to the Executive, in accordance with the provisions of Article 29.
The Legislative Branch
Article 50. The legislative power of the United Mexican States is vested in a General Congress, which shall be divided into two chambers, one of deputies and the other of senators.
Election and Installation of Congress
Article 51. The Chamber of Deputies is composed of representatives of the Nation, all elected every three years by the Mexican citizens.
Article 52.One proprietary deputy shall be elected for each two hundred thousand inhabitants or fraction of over one hundred thousand, according to the general census of the Federal District and of each State and Territory; but in no case shall the representation of a State be less than two deputies, and that of a Territory whose population is less than that fixed by this article shall be one proprietary deputy.
Article 53. For each proprietary deputy there shall be elected one alternate.
Article 54. The election of deputies shall be direct, subject to the provisions of Article 52, and will be supplemented, in addition, by party deputies, in both cases according to the provisions of the electoral law, and in the latter case according to the following rules:
1. Every national political party, if it obtains two and one half percent of the total vote of the country in an election, shall have the right to five deputies from among its candidates, and to one more, up to twenty as a maximum, for each additional one half percent of the votes cast;
2. If a party obtains a majority of the votes in twenty or more electoral districts, it will not be entitled to party deputies, but if it is successful in less than that number of districts, as long as it obtains the two and a half percentage referred to in the preceding paragraph, it will be entitled to twenty deputies, including those elected directly and those by percentage.
3. These will be accredited in strict order, in accordance with the percentage of votes they have received in relation to other candidates of the same party, throughout the country.
4. Only national political parties that have registered in accordance with the federal electoral law at least one year prior to election day may accredit deputies under the terms of this article; and
5. Majority deputies and party deputies, being representatives of the Nation as stated in Article 51, are of the same rank and have equal rights and obligations .
Article 55. The following are the requirements to be a deputy:
1. To be a Mexican citizen by birth, in the exercise of his rights;
2. To have attained twenty-five years of age by the day of the election;
3. To be a native of the State or Territory in which the election is held, or a resident thereof with effective residence for more than six months prior to its date. Residence is not lost by absence in the discharge of elective public office;
4. Not to be in active service in the federal army nor to hold command in the police or rural gendarmerÃa in the district where the election is held, within at least ninety days prior thereto;
5. Not to be secretary or subsecretary of state, nor magistrate of the Supreme Court of Justice of the Nation, unless he shall have definitively resigned from his position ninety days before the election. The governors of the States cannot be elected in the districts of their jurisdiction during their term of office, even though they may have definitively resigned their position.
The secretaries of government of the States, federal magistrates and judges or those of the States, cannot be elected in the districts of their respective jurisdictions unless they definitively resign their position ninety days before the election;
6. Not to be a minister of any religious cult; and
7. Not to be subject to any of the incapacities specified in Article 59.
Article 56. The Chamber of Senators shall be composed of two members for each State and two for the Federal District, all directly elected every six years.
The legislature of each State shall declare elected the person obtaining a majority of the votes cast.
Article 57. For each proprietary senator one alternate shall be elected.
Article 58. To be a senator the same requisites must be met as to be a deputy except that of age, which shall be thirty-five years of age attained by the date of the election.
Article 59. Senators and deputies to the Congress of the Union cannot be reelected for the immediately following term.
Alternate senators and deputies may be elected for the immediately following term as proprietaries, provided that they have not been serving (in the office of their principals); but proprietary senators and deputies cannot be elected for the immediately following term in the capacity of alternates.
Article 60. Each chamber shall be the judge of the elections of its members and shall decide any questions with respect thereto. Its decision shall be final and unimpeachable.
Article 61. Deputies and senators are inviolable for opinions expressed by them in the discharge of their offices and shall never be called to account for them.
Article 62. Proprietary deputies and senators, during their terms of office, may not hold any other commission or employment of the Federation or of the States for which they receive a salary, without prior permission from the respective chamber; but their representative functions shall thereupon cease, while they are holding the new position. The same rule shall apply to alternate deputies and senators when serving (as principals). Infraction of this provision shall be punishable by loss of the status of deputy or senator.
Article 63. The chambers cannot open their sessions nor exercise their duties without the presence, in the Senate, of two thirds, and in the Chamber of Deputies, of more than half of the total number of members; but those present in either chamber must assemble on the day appointed by law and compel the absentees to attend within thirty days following, with the warning that if they do not do so it shall be understood that by that sole fact they do not accept their office, and the alternates shall be immediately called and must present themselves within a like period, and if they fail to do so, the postion shall be declared vacant and a new election shall be called.
It is also understood that deputies or senators who fail to attend for ten consecutive days, without justifiable cause or previous leave from the president of their respective chamber, of which the chamber shall be advised, renounce their attendance until the next period, and their alternates shall be called at once.
If there shall be no quorum to install either chamber or to exercise their functions when once installed, the alternates shall be called immediately to present themselves within the shortest possible time, to discharge their office until the expiration of the thirty days above mentioned.
Anyone elected deputy or senator who does not present himself and assume the office, without justifiable cause as determined by the respective Chamber, within the time limit indicated in the first paragraph of this article, shall be held responsible and subject to the sanctions prescribed by law. National political parties that have entered candidates in an election for deputies or senators but which agree that those elected shall not present themselves to assume office, will likewise be held responsible and punishable by the same law.
Article 64. Deputies and senators who, without justifiable cause or without permission of the president of the respective chamber, do not attend a session, shall have no right to remuneration for the day on which they were absent.
Article 65. The Congress shall meet on the first day of September of each year in regular session, when it shall occupy itself with the following matters:
1. To audit the public accounts of the preceding year, which shall be submitted to the Chamber of Deputies within the first ten days after the opening of the session. The audit shall not be limited to investigation as to whether the amounts expended are or are not in accord with the respective items of the budget, but shall extend to an examination of the exactness and justification of the expenditures made and of any responsibilities arising therefrom.
There can be no secret items other than those considered necessary because of that character in the budget itself and which the secretaries shall employ by written order of the President of the Republic.
2. To examine, discuss, and approve the budget of the following fiscal year and to impose the necessary taxes to cover it;
3. To study, discuss, and vote on all bills which are introduced, and to decide on all other matters which pertain to it according to this Constitution.
Article 66. The period of regular sessions shall continue for the time necessary to dispose of all matters mentioned in the preceding article; but it cannot be prolonged beyond December 31 of the same year.
If the two chambers are not in accord as to the termination of the sessions before the date indicated, the President of the Republic shall decide.
Article 67. The Congress or only one of its chambers, when a matter exclusive to it is concerned, shall meet in extraordinary sessions whenever the Permanent Committee shall convoke them for that purpose; but in both cases they shall occupy themselves only with the matter or matters which the said Committee submits to their attention, which shall be stated in the respective call.
Article 68. The two chambers shall reside at the same place and cannot remove to another unless they previously agree to the removal and on the time and manner of so doing, designating the same place for the meeting of both. But if the two in agreeing on removal, differ in regard to the time, manner, and place, the Executive shall settle the difference by choosing one of the two extremes in question. Neither chamber may suspend its sessions for more than three days without the consent of the other.
Article 69. The President of the Republic shall attend the opening of the regular sessions of the Congress and shall submit a report, in writing, in which he shall indicate the general state of the administration of the country. At the opening of extraordinary sessions of Congress, or of only one of the chambers, the Chairman of the Permanent Committee shall report as to the motives or reasons that led to the call.
Article 70. Every resolution of the Congress shall have the character of a law or of a decree. The laws or decrees shall be communicated to the Executive signed by the Presidents of both chambers and by a secretary of each, and shall be promulgated in this form: "The Congress of the United Mexican States decrees (Text of the law or decree)."
Introduction and Enactment of Laws
Article 71. The right to introduce laws or decrees belongs:
1. To the President of the Republic;
2. To the deputies and senators of the Congress;
3. To the legislatures of the States.
The bills submitted by the President of the Republic, by the legislatures of the States or by deputations thereof shall be referred at once to Committee. Those which are introduced by deputies or senators shall be subject to the procedure prescribed in the regulations on debate.
Article 72. Every bill or proposed decree, the resolution of which does not pertain exclusively to one of the chambers, shall be discussed successively in both, the regulations on debate being observed as to form, intervals of time, and mode of procedure in discussions and voting.
1. A bill approved in the chamber of its origin shall be referred to the other for discussion. If the latter approves it, it shall be sent to the Executive who, if he has no objections to make, shall immediately publish it.
2. Every bill shall be regarded as approved by the executive branch if it is not returned to the chamber of its origin within ten business days; unless, during this time, the Congress shall have adjourned or suspended its sessions, in which case the return must be made on the first business day on which the Congress next meets.
3. A bill or proposed decree rejected in whole or in part by the Executive shall be returned, with his objections, to the chamber of origin. It must be discussed anew by the latter, and if it is confirmed by a vote of two thirds of the total membership it shall again be sent to the revisory chamber. If it is sanctioned by the latter by the same majority, the bill shall become a law or decree and shall be returned to the Executive for promulgation. The voting on a law or decree shall be by roll call.
4. If any bill or proposed decree is rejected in its entirety by the chamber of revision, it shall be returned to that of its origin with the objections made by the former. If upon examining it anew, it is approved by an absolute majority of the members present, it shall be returned to the chamber that rejected it, which shall again consider it and if it approves it by the same majority, it shall be sent to the Executive for the purposes of section (a) above; but if disapproved, it cannot be again introduced in the same period of sessions.
5. If a bill is rejected in part, or amended or added to by the revisory chamber, the new discussion in the chamber of origin shall be confined to the part rejected or to the amendments or additions, without alteration in any way of the articles approved. If the additions or amendments made by the revisory chamber are approved by an absolute majority of votes present in the chamber of origin, the entire bill is sent to the Executive for the purposes indicated in section (a). If the additions or amendments made by the revisory chamber are disapproved by a majority of the votes in the chamber of origin, they shall be returned to the former for consideration of the reasons of the latter, and if the amendments or additions are rejected in this second revision by an absolute majority of votes present, the bill, insofar as it has been approved by both chambers, shall be sent to the Executive for the purposes indicated in section (a). If the revisory chamber insists, by an absolute majority of votes present, upon such amendments or additions, the entire bill shall not be again presented until the following period of sessions unless both chambers agree, by an absolute majority of their members present, that the law or decree be issued only with the approved articles, and those added or amended shall be reserved for examination and vote at the following sessions.
6. In the interpretation, amendment, or repeal of laws or decrees, the same procedure shall be followed as that established for their enactment.
7. Every bill or proposed decree which is rejected in the chamber of its origin, cannot be again introduced in the sessions of that year.
8. The enactment of laws or decrees may commence in either of the two chambers, without distinction, with the exception of bills dealing with loans, taxes, or imposts, or with the recruiting of troops, all of which must be discussed first in the Chamber of Deputies.
9. Bills or proposed decrees shall preferentially be discussed in the chamber in which they are introduced, unless one month elapses since they were sent to the reporting committee without a report being made, in which case the bill may be discussed in the other chamber.
10. The Federal Executive cannot offer objections to the resolutions of the Congress or of either chamber, when they exercise functions of an electoral body or of a jury, nor when the Chamber of Deputies declares that a high functionary of the Federation should be impeached for official crimes. Neither may he do so in regard to a decree of convocation to extraordinary sessions issued by the Permanent Committee.
Powers of Congress
Article 73. The Congress has the power:
1. To admit new States and Territories into the Federal Union;
2. To erect the Territories into States when they shall have a population of eighty thousand inhabitants and the resources necessary to provide for their political existence;
3. To form new States within the boundaries of existing ones, for which purpose it shall be necessary:
- That the section or sections seeking to be made a State shall have a population of at least one hundred and twenty thousand inhabitants.
- That it be proven before Congress that they possess the resources necessary to provide for their political existence.
- That the legislatures of the States involved be heard as to the feasibility or infeasibility of the formation of the new State, and they shall be required to render their report within six months from the date that the respective communication was submitted to them.
- That the Executive of the Federation likewise be heard, who shall transmit his report within seven days from the date on which it was requested of him.
- That the creation of the new State be adopted by a vote of two thirds of the deputies and senators present in their respective chambers.
- That the resolution of the Congress be ratified by a majority of the legislatures of the States, with a copy of the record before them, provided that the legislatures of the States whose territory is involved have given their consent.
- If the legislatures of the States whose territory is involved have not given their consent, the ratification mentioned in the foregoing section must be given by two thirds of the legislatures of the other States.
4. To arrange permanently the boundaries of the States, settling any differences that may arise between them in regard to the demarcation of their respective territories, except when these differences may be of a contentious character.
5. To change the seat of the supreme powers of the Federation.
6. To legislate on all matters concerning the Federal District and Territories, subject to the following bases:
- The government of the Federal District shall be entrusted to the President of the Republic, who shall exercise it through the organ or organs that are prescribed by law.
- The government of the Territories shall be entrusted to governors who shall depend directly on the President of the Republic, who shall freely appoint and remove them.
The Territories shall be divided into Municipalities, which shall have a land area and number of inhabitants sufficient to be able maintain themselves on their own resources and contribute to their ordinary expenditures. Each Municipality in the Territories shall be entrusted to an ayuntamiento elected by direct popular vote.
7. The governors of the Territories shall communicate with the President of the Republic through such channels as are specified by law.
8. Appointments of the magistrates of the superior court of justice of the Federal District and of the Territories shall be made by the President of the Republic and submitted for the approval of the Chamber of Deputies, which shall grant or refuse such approval within a period of ten days, without extension. If the Chamber does not act within such time, the appointments shall be considered approved. Without the approval of the Chamber, the magistrates appointed by the President of the Republic cannot take possession. In the event that the Chamber of Deputies does not approve two successive appointments with respect to the same vacancy, the President of the Republic shall make a third appointment) which shall be effective at once, as provisional, and which shall be submitted to the approval of the Chamber at the following regular period of sessions. At this period of sessions, within the first ten days' the Chamber must approve or disapprove the appointment, and if it approved it, or makes no decision, the magistrate appointed provisionally shall continue to serve permanently. If the Chamber rejects the appointment, the provisional magistrate shall cease to function at once, and the President of the Republic shall submit a new appointment for the approval of the Chamber, under the terms indicated.
In cases of temporary inability of magistrates to act for more than three months, they shall be replaced by appointments which the President of the Republic shall submit to the approval of the Chamber of Deputies, and during its adjournment, to that of the Permanent Committee, in either instance by observing the provisions of the preceding clauses.
In cases of temporary inability which do not exceed three months, the Organic Law shall determine the manner of making the substitution. If a magistrate should cease to act because of death, resignation, or incapacity, the President of the Republic shall submit a new appointment for the approval of the Chamber of Deputies. If the Chamber is not in session, the Permanent Committee shall give provisional approval, until the Chamber meets and gives final approval.
The judges of first instance, and the minor and correctional judges of the Federal District and the Territories, shall be appointed by the supreme court of justice of the Federal District; they must have the qualifications which the law prescribes and shall be replaced during their temporary inability to act, in the manner provided by law.
The remuneration which magistrates and judges receive for their services cannot be decreased during their terms of office.
The magistrates and judges to whom this basis refers, shall continue in office for six years; but they may be removed from their positions when guilty of bad conduct, in accordance with the final part of Article 111 or after corresponding action for responsibility.
9.The public ministry in the Federal District and in the Territories shall be in charge of an attorney general (Procurador General), who shall reside in Mexico City, and such number of agents as shall be determined by law; and he shall depend directly on the President of the Republic, who may freely appoint and remove him.
10. To levy the necessary taxes to cover the Budget.
11. To fix the bases upon which the President of the Republic may borrow on the credit of the Nation; to approve such loans and to acknowledge and order payment of the national debt. No loan may be effected except for the construction of works which directly produce an increase in the public revenues unless for purposes of currency regulation, conversion operations or loans contracted during some emergency declared by the President of the Republic within the terms of Article 29.
12. To prevent the establishment of restrictions on commerce from State to State.
13. To legislate throughout the Republic on hydrocarbons, mining, the motion picture industry, commerce, games of chance and lotteries, credit institutions, and electric power, to establish a single bank of issue under the provisions of Article 28 of the Constitution and to enact labor laws regulating Article 123 of this Constitution.
14. To create and abolish public offices of the Federation and to fix, increase, or decrease their salaries.
15. To declare war, in the light of information submitted by the Executive.
16. To enact laws pursuant to which captures on sea and land must be declared good or bad; and to enact maritime laws applicable in peace and war.
17. To raise and maintain the armed forces of the Union, to wit: army, navy and air force, and to regulate their organization and service.
18. To prescribe regulations for the purpose of organizing, arming, and disciplining the national guard, reserving to the citizens who compose it the appointment of their respective commanders and officers, and to the States the power of training them in accordance with the discipline prescribed by such regulations.
19. To enact laws in regard to nationality, the legal status of foreigners, citizenship, naturalization, colonization, emigration and immigration, and the general health of the country.
- The General Health Council shall depend directly upon the President of the Republic, without the intervention of any Secretariat of State, and its general provisions shall be compulsory throughout the country.
- In case of serious epidemics or danger of invasion of the country by exotic diseases, the Department of Health shall be required to dictate immediately the necessary preventive measures, subject to subsequent approval by the President of the Republic.
- The health authority shall be executive and its provisions shall be obeyed by the administrative authorities of the country.
- The measures which the Council shall have put into effect in the campaign against alcoholism and the sale of substances which poison the individual and degenerate the race shall afterwards be examined by the Congress of the Union, in cases within its competency.
20. To enact laws concerning general means of communication, and in regard to posts and post offices; to enact laws on the use and utilization of waters under federal jurisdiction.
21. To establish mints, fix the standards of coins and coinage, to determine the value of foreign currencies, and to adopt a general system of weights and measures.
22. To establish rules for the occupation and alienation of vacant lands and fix their price.
23. To enact laws for the organization of the Mexican Diplomatic Corps and Consular Corps.
24. To define crimes and offenses against the Federation and to prescribe the punishments to be imposed for them.
25. To grant amnesties for crimes within the jurisdiction of the federal courts.
26. To prescribe its own rules and adopt necessary measures to enforce the attendance of absent deputies and senators, and to correct the offenses or omissions of those present.
27. To enact the organic law governing the Auditor General's Office (ContadurÃa Mayor).
28. To establish, organize, end maintain throughout the Republic rural, elementary, superior, secondary, and professional schools, and schools for scientific research, of fine arts, and of technical training; practical schools of agriculture and mining, of arts and crafts, museums, libraries, observatories, and other institutions concerning the general culture of the inhabitants of the Nation, and to legislate on all matters relating to such institutions; to legislate on matters concerning archeological, artistic, and historic monuments, the conservation of which is of national interest; and also to enact laws designed to distribute feasibly between the Federation, the States, and Municipalities the exercise of the educative function and the appropriations corresponding to this public service, seeking to unify and coordinate education throughout the Republic. The diplomas issued by the aforementioned establishments shall be valid throughout the Republic.
29. To grant leave of absence to the President of the Republic, and to constitute itself as an electoral college and designate the citizen who is to replace the President of the Republic, as either an interim or provisional substitute, under the terms of Articles 84 and 85 of this Constitution.
30. To accept the resignation from office of the President of the Republic .
31. To examine the account which the executive branch must submit to it annually, which examination must include not only conformity of the items expended within the budget of expenditures, but also the correctness and justification of such items
32. To levy taxes:
- On foreign commerce.
- On the utilization and exploitation of natural resources included in paragraphs 4 and 5 of Article 27.
- On institutions of credit and insurance companies.
- On public services under concession or operated directly by the Federation.
- Special taxes on:
- Electric power
- Production and consumption of processed tobacco
- Gasoline and other products derived from petroleum
- Matches and "cerillos"
- Maguey and its fermented products
- Forestry exploitation
- Production and consumption of beer
Federal entitites shall share in the revenues from these special taxes in the proportion fixed by secondary federal law. The local legislatures shall fix the percentage corresponding to the Municipalities from revenues obtained from the tax on electric power.
To enact all laws that may be necessary to enforce the foregoing powers, and all others granted by this Constitution to the branches of the Union.
Article 74. The exclusive powers of the Chamber of Deputies are:
1. To constitute itself as an electoral college in order to exercise the powers assigned to it by law with respect to the election of the President of the Republic .
2. To supervise, through a committee drawn from its body, the correct performance of the functions of the Auditor General's Office.
3. To appoint the chiefs and other employees of that office.
4. To approve the annual budget of expenditures, after first discussing the taxes which, in its judgment, must be levied to cover it.
5. To take cognizance of accusations against public officials mentioned in this Constitution, for official crimes, and in proper cases to present impeachment before the Chamber of Senators; and to constitute itself as a grand jury in order to decide whether or not to proceed against any of the public officials who enjoy constitutional prerogative, when they are accused of common crimes.
6. To grant or refuse its approval of appointments of magistrates of the superior court of justice of the Federal District and of the Territories, submitted to it by the President of the Republic.
7. To declare justified or unjustified the petitions for removal of judicial authorities made by the President of the Republic, under the terms of the final part of Article 111.
8. Any others which this Constitution expressly confers upon it.
Article 75. The Chamber of Deputies, upon approving the budget of expenditures, may not fail to fix the remuneration which corresponds to an office which is established by law; and in the event that for any reason it fails to fix such remuneration, the amount fixed in the previous budget or in the law which established the office shall be understood to be designated.
Article 76. The exclusive powers of the Senate are:
1. To approve the treaties and diplomatic conventions made by the President of the Republic with foreign powers.
2. To ratify the appointments which said official makes of ministers, diplomatic agents, consuls general, superior employees of the Treasury, colonels and other superior chiefs of the national army, navy and air force, in accordance with provisions of law.
3. To authorize him also to permit the departure of national troops beyond the borders of the country, the passage of foreign troops through the national territory, and the sojourn of squadrons of other powers for more than one month in Mexican waters.
4. To give its consent for the President of the Republic to order the national guard outside of its respective States or Territories, fixing the necessary force.
5. To declare, whenever the constitutional powers of a State have disappeared, that the condition has arisen for appointing a provisional governor, who shall call elections in accordance with the constitutional laws of the said State. The appointment of a governor shall be made by the Senate from a list of three proposed by the President of the Republic, with the approval of two thirds of the members present, and during adjournments, by the Permanent Committee, according to the same rules. The official thus appointed cannot be elected constitutional governor in the elections held pursuant to the call which he issues. This provision shall govern whenever the constitution of a State does not make provision for such cases.
6. To settle political questions which may arise between the powers of a State, whenever any of them shall apply to the Senate for the purpose, or whenever, by reason of such questions, the constitutional order shall be interrupted through a conflict of arms. In this event the Senate shall declare its decision, subjecting itself to the general Constitution of the Republic and to that of the State.
The law shall regulate the exercise of this and of the foregoing powers.
7. To constitute itself as a grand jury to take cognizance of official crimes of the officials which this Constitution expressly designates.
8. To grant or deny its approval of the appointments of ministers of the Supreme Court of Justice of the Nation, and of requests for leaves of absence and of the resignations of these officials, which the President of the Republic may submit to it.
9. To declare justified or not justified petitions for removal of judicial authorities made by the President of the Republic, under the provisions of the final part of Article 111.
10. Any others which this Constitution may assign to it.
Article 77. Each of the chambers, without the intervention of the other, may:
1. Dictate economic resolutions relating to its internal organization.
2. Communicate with the co-legislative chamber and with the Executive of the Union, through committees of its own body.
3. Appoint the employees of its secretariat and prescribe the internal regulations thereof.
4. Issue a call for extraordinary elections for the purpose of filling vacancies of its respective members.
The Permanent Committee
Article 78. During the adjournment of Congress there shall be a Permanent Committee composed of twenty-nine members, of whom fifteen shall be deputies and fourteen senators, named by their respective chambers on the eve of the close of the sessions.
Article 79. The Permanent Committee, in addition to the powers which this Constitution expressly confers upon it, shall have the following:
1. To give its consent for the use of the national guard, in the cases mentioned in Article 76, section IV.
2. To administer the affirmation or oath of office (protesta) of the President of the Republic, the members of the Supreme Court of Justice of the Nation, and of the magistrates of the Federal District and Territories, if the latter officials should be in Mexico City.
3.To decide on matters within its competence; during the adjournment of the Congress of the Union, to receive the bills introduced and proposals addressed to the chambers and turn them over for action in the committees of the chamber to which they are addressed, so that they may be acted upon at the next period of sessions.
4. To issue on its own motion or on the proposal of the Executive, the convocation of the Congress or of a single chamber to extraordinary sessions, in both cases the vote of two thirds of the individuals present being necessary. The call shall set forth the purpose or purposes of the extraordinary sessions.
5. To grant or deny its approval of appointments of ministers of the Supreme Court and magistrates of the superior court of justice of the Federal District and of the territories, and also of requests for leaves of absence of the ministers of the court which the President of the Republic may submit to it.
6. To grant a leave of absence for thirty days to the President of the Republic and to appoint a President ad interim during such absence.
7. To ratify the appointments made by the President of the Republic as ministers, diplomatic agents, consuls general, higher employees of the Treasury, colonels and other higher ranks of the national army, navy, and air force, in accordance with provisions of law.
The Executive Branch
Article 80. The exercise of the supreme executive power of the Union is vested in a single individual who is designated "President of the United Mexican States."
Article 81. The election of the President shall be direct and under the terms prescribed by the Electoral Law.
Article 82. In order to be President it is required:
1. To be a Mexican citizen by birth, in the full enjoyment of his rights, and the son of Mexican parents by birth.
2. To have attained 35 years of age at the time of the election.
3. To have resided in the country during the entire year prior to the day of the election.
4. Not to possess ecclesiastic status nor be a minister of any cult.
5. Not to be in active service, in case of belonging to the army, within six months prior to the day of the election.
6. Not to be a Secretary or Subsecretary of State, chief or secretary general of an administrative department, Attorney General of the Republic, nor the governor of any State or Territory, unless he shall have resigned such position six months prior to the day of the election.
7. Not to be included within any of the grounds for incapacity indicated in Article 83.
Article 83. The President shall assume the duties of office on the first of December for a term of six years. A citizen who has held the office of President of the Republic, by popular election or by appointment as ad interim, provisional, or substitute President, can in no case and for no reason again hold that office.
Article 84. In the event of the absolute disability of the President of the Republic, occurring during the first two years of his term, if the Congress is in session, it shall immediately constitute itself as an electoral college, and if there is at least two thirds of the total membership present, it shall name by secret ballot, and by an absolute majority of votes, an interim President; the same Congress shall issue, within ten days following the designation of the interim President, a call for the election of a President to complete the respective term; between the date of the call and that designated for holding the election, there must be an interval of not less than fourteen months nor more than eighteen.
If the Congress is not in session, the Permanent Committee shall immediately name a provisional President and shall call Congress in extraordinary session in order that it, in turn, may designate an interim President and issue the call for presidential elections as indicated in the preceding paragraph.
When the disability of the President occurs within the last four years of his term, if the Congress is in session, it shall designate a substitute President to complete the term; if the Congress is not in session, the Permanent Committee shall name a provisional President and shall convoke the Congress in extraordinary session in order that it may constitute itself into an electoral college and elect the s ub stitute President.
Article 85. If at the commencement of a constitutional period the President-elect does not present himself, or if the elections have not been held and the results declared on December first, the President whose term has ended shall nevertheless cease to function, and at once the executive power shall be entrusted to an individual whom the Congress shall designate as interim President, or if Congress is not in session, to an individual whom the Permanent Committee shall designate as provisional President; proceeding according to the provisions of the preceding article.
When the disability of the President is temporary, the Congress, if in session, or if not, the Permanent Committee, shall designate an interim President to function during the period of the disability.
When the disability is for more than thirty days and the Congress is not in session, the Permanent Committee shall convoke an extraordinary session of the Congress in order that it may decide upon the leave of absence, or as the case may be, name an interim President.
If the temporary disability becomes absolute, the procedure described in the preceding article shall be observed.
Article 86. The office of President of the Republic can be resigned only for grave cause, which shall be passed upon by the Congress of the Union, to which the resignation must be presented.
Article 87. The President, upon taking possession of his office, shall make before the Congress of the Union, or if in adjournment before the Permanent Committee, the following affirmation: "I solemnly promise that I will observe and enforce the Political Constitution of the United Mexican States and the laws enacted in pursuance thereof, and that I will discharge loyally and patriotically the office of President of the Republic which the people have conferred upon me, in all ways looking to the welfare and prosperity of the Union; and if I do not do so may the Nation demand it of me."
Article 88. The President of the Republic may not absent himself from the national territory without the permission of the Congress of the Union or of the Permanent Committee, as the case may be.
Article 89. The powers and duties of the President are the following:
1. To promulgate and execute the laws enacted by the Congress of the Union, providing for their exact enforcement in the administrative sphere.
2. To appoint and remove freely the secretaries of the Government, the Attorney General of the Republic, the governor of the Federal District and the governors of the Territories, the attorney general of the Federal District and Territories, to remove diplomatic agents and superior employees of the Treasury, and to appoint and remove freely all other employees of the Union whose appointment or removal is not otherwise provided for in the Constitution or by law.
3. To appoint ministers, diplomatic agents, and consuls general, with the approval of the Senate.
4. To appoint, with the approval of the Senate, the colonels and other superior officers of the army, navy, and air force, and the superior employees of the Treasury.
5. To appoint the other officers of the army, navy, and air force, as provided by law.
6. To dispose of the permanent armed forces, including the land army, the marine navy and the air force for internal security and exterior defense of the Federation.
7. To dispose of the national guard for the same purposes, under the terms indicated in section IV of Article 76.
8. To declare war in the name of the United Mexican States, pursuant to a previous law of the Congress of the Union.
10. To direct diplomatic negotiations and make treaties with foreign powers, submitting them to the ratification of the federal Congress.
11. To convoke the Congress in extraordinary session when the Permanent Committee so resolves.
12. To give to the judicial branch whatever assistance it may need for the expeditious exercise of its functions.
13. To open all classes of ports, establish maritime and frontier custom houses, and designate their location.
14. To grant, according to law, pardons to criminals convicted of crimes within the jurisdiction of the federal courts, and to those convicted of common crimes in the Federal District and Territories.
15. To grant exclusive privileges, for a limited time, in accordance with the respective law, to discoverers, inventors, or improvers in any branch of industry.
16. When the Chamber of Senators is not in session, the President of the Republic may make the appointments mentioned in sections III and IV, with the approval of the Permanent Committee.
17. To appoint magistrates of the Superior Court of Justice of the Federal District and of the Territories and submit the appointments to the approval of the Chamber of Deputies, or to the Permanent Committee, as the case may be.
18. To appoint the ministers of the Supreme Court of Justice and submit such appointments, leaves of absence, and resignations, to the approval of the Chamber of Senators, or to the Permanent Committee, as the case may be.
19. To request the removal, for bad conduct, of the judicial authorities referred to in the final part of Article 111.
20. And all other expressly conferred on him by this Constitution.
Article 90. For the dispatch of the administrative business of the Federations there shall be the number of secretaries that the Congress shall establish by law, which shall distribute the business to be entrusted to each Secretariat.
Article 91. To be a secretary it is required to be a Mexican citizen by birth, to be in exercise of his rights, and be at least thirty years of age.
Article 92. All regulations, decrees, and orders of the President must be signed by the secretary (Secretario del Despacho) in charge of the branch (of administration) to which the matter pertains, and without this requisite they shall not be obeyed. The regulations, decrees, and orders of the President relating to the government of the Federal District and to the administrative departments, shall be sent directly by the President to the governor of the District and to the chief of the respective department.
Article 93. The secretaries (del Despacho), as soon as the regular period of sessions is opened, shall give a report to the Congress on the state of their respective branches. Either of the Chambers may summon the secretaries of state for information, whenever a law is under discussion or a matter is being studied relating to their secretariat.
The Judicial Branch
Article 94. The judicial power of the Federation is vested in a Supreme Court of Justice, in circuit courts, as a body in matters of amparo and as single judges in matters of appeal, and in district courts. The Supreme Court of Justice of the Nation shall consist of twenty-one ministers and shall function as a full court (en tribunal pleno) or divided into sections (salas). There shall also be five supernumerary ministers. Hearings of the full court or of the sections shall be public, with the exception of cases in which morals or the public interest require secrecy. The terms of sessions of the Supreme Court, as a full court or in sections, the powers and duties of the supernumerary ministers, and the number and jurisdiction of the circuit courts and district judges shall be governed by this Constitution and by provisions of law. In no case shall the supernumerary ministers sit in the full court. The remuneration received for their services by the ministers of the Supreme Court, by the circuit magistrates and by the district judges may not be reduced during their term of office.
The ministers of the Supreme Court of Justice may be removed from office whenever they are guilty of bad conduct, in accordance with the final part of Article 111, after judgment of their corresponding liability.
Article 95. To be elected minister of the Supreme Court of Justice, it is necessary:
1. To be a Mexican citizen by birth, in full exercise of political and civil rights.
2. Not to be over sixty-five nor less than thirty-five years of age on the day of the election.
3. To have held on the day of the election the professional degree of lawyer for a minimum of five years, issued by an authority or corporation legally empowered to do so.
4. To enjoy a good reputation and not to have been convicted of a crime punishable by imprisonment of more than one year; but if it concerned robbery, fraud, forgery, abuse of confidence or other crime which seriously injures good fame as conceived by the public, he shall be disqualified for the office whatever the penalty may have been.
5. To have resided in the country during the last five years, except in case of absence in the service of the Republic for a period of less than six months.
Article 96. Appointments of the ministers of the Supreme Court shall be made by the President of the Republic and submitted to the approval of the Chamber of Senators, which shall grant or deny approval within the unalterable period of ten days. If the Chamber fails to decide within that time, the appointments shall be considered as approved Without the approval of the Senate, the magistrates of the Supreme Court named by the President of the Republic cannot take office. In the event that the Chamber of Senators does not approve two successive nominations for the same vacancy, the President of the Republic shall make a third appointment, which shall become effective at once as provisional, and which shall be submitted to the said Chamber at the following regular period of sessions At such period of sessions, within the first ten days, the Senate must approve or disapprove the appointment, and if it approves it, or takes no decision, the magistrate appointed provisionally shall continue in office permanently. If the Senate rejects the appointment, the provisional minister shall cease to act and the President of the Republic shall submit a new appointment to the approval of the Senate, in the manner indicated.
Article 97. The circuit magistrates and district judges shall be appointed by the Supreme Court of Justice of the Nation, shall have the qualifications which the law requires' and shall hold office for four years, at the expiration of which, if they are reelected or elevated to a higher position, they may be removed from office only if guilty of bad conduct, in accordance with the final part of Article 111 or after judgment of their corresponding liability.
The Supreme Court of Justice may also change the seat of the district judges, transferring them from one district to another, or fixing their residence in another town, as it may deem convenient for better public service. The same may be done with respect to circuit magistrates.
The Supreme Court of Justice of the Nation may also appoint supernumerary circuit magistrates and district judges to assist in the work of the courts and tribunals where there is an excess of business, in order to provide for prompt and expeditious administration of justice; and it shall appoint one or more of its members, or some district judge or circuit magistrate, or designate one or more special commissioners, when deemed advisable, or if the federal Executive, or one of the chambers of Congress, or the governor of a State so requests, solely to investigate the conduct of any federal judge or magistrate, or any act or acts which may constitute a violation of any individual guarantee, or the violation of the public election, or some other crime punishable by federal law.
The circuit courts and district courts shall be distributed among the ministers of the Supreme Court, who shall visit them periodically, observe the conduct of the magistrates and judges presiding over them, hear complaints presented against such officials, and perform any other duties prescribed by law. The Supreme Court of Justice may freely appoint and remove its clerk and any other employees serving it, with strict observance of the appropriate law. In the same way, the circuit magistrates and district judges shall appoint and remove their respective clerks and employees.
The Supreme Court of Justice shall designate each year one of its members as president, with the right of reelection.
Each minister of the Supreme Court of Justice' on assuming office, shall affirm before the Senate, or before the Permanent Committee if the former is in adjournment, in the following form:
President: "Do you solemnly promise that you will discharge loyally and patriotically the office of Minister of the Supreme Court of Justice of the Nation which has been conferred upon you, and that you will observe and enforce the Political Constitution of the United Mexican States and the laws enacted in pursuance thereof, in all ways looking to the welfare and prosperity of the Union?"
Minister: "Yes, I promise. "
President: "If you fail to do so, may the Nation call you to account.
The circuit magistrates and district judges shall make their affirmation before the Supreme Court or before an authority designated by law.
A minister of the Supreme Court of Justice of the Nation who is temporarily absent from office, for a period not exceeding one month, shall be replaced in the corresponding section by a supernumerary. If the absence exceeds that period, the President of the Republic shall submit the appointment of a provisional minister to the approval of the Senate, or if adjourned, to the Permanent Committee, observing in each case the provisions of the final part of Article 96.
In the event of the death, resignation, or incapacity of a minister, the President of the Republic shall submit a new appointment to the approval of the Senate. If the Senate is not in session, the Permanent Committee shall give its approval, until the former meets to give definitive approval.
Article 99. Resignations of ministers of the Supreme Court of Justice may be submitted only for serious reasons; they shall be submitted to the Executive, and if he accepts them they shall be sent to the Senate for approval, or if adjourned to the Permanent Committee.
Article 100. Leaves of absence of ministers, when they do not exceed one month, shall be granted by the Supreme Court of Justice of the Nation; those that exceed that time shall be granted by the President of the Republic, with the approval of the Senate, or during its adjournment, of the Permanent Committee.
Article 101. The ministers of the Supreme Court of Justice, the circuit magistrates, the district judges, and their respective clerks may not in any case accept and hold employment or office of the Federation, the States, or of a private nature, except honorary positions in scientific, literary, or charitable associations. Violation of this provision shall be punishable by loss of office.
Article 102. The law shall organize a public ministry of the Federation, the officials of which shall be appointed and removed by the Executive, in accordance with the respective law, and which shall be presided over by an attorney general (Procurador General) who shall have the same qualifications as those required to be a magistrate of the Supreme Court of Justice.
The prosecution before the courts of all federal offenses shall be the duty of the public ministry of the Federation; and, therefore, it shall request orders of arrest for offenders; procure and present evidence as to their liability; see that trials are conducted with due regularity in order that the administration of justice may be prompt and efficient; request the imposition of sentence; and intervene in all matters that the law may determine.
The Attorney General of the Republic shall personally intervene in all matters in which the Federation is a party; in cases affecting ministers, diplomats, and consuls general, and in those that arise between two or more States of the Union, between one State and the Federation, or between the powers of one State. The Attorney General may intervene in person or through one of his agents in other cases where the intervention of the public ministry of the Federation is necessary.
The Attorney General shall be the legal counselor of the Government. Both he and his agents shall strictly obey the provisions of law, being responsible for every offense, omission, or violation that they may incur in the discharge of their duties.
Article 103. The federal courts shall decide all controversies that arise:
1. Out of law or acts of the authorities that violate individual guarantees.
2. Because of laws or acts of the federal authority restricting or encroaching on the sovereignty of the States.
3. Because of laws or acts of State authorities that invade the sphere of federal authority.
Article 104. The federal courts shall have jurisdiction over:
1. All controversies of a civil or criminal nature that arise from the enforcement and application of federal laws or from treaties made with foreign powers. Whenever such controversies affect only the interests of private parties, the regular local judges and courts of the States, or the Federal District and Territories may also assume jurisdiction, at the election of the plaintiff. Judgments of the courts of first instance may be appealed to the next higher court above that in which the case was first heard.
In cases in which the Federation is interested, the laws may provide for appeals to the Supreme Court of Justice against judgments in second instance or against those of administrative courts created by federal law, provided that such courts are granted full autonomy to render their decisions.
2. All controversies that involve admiralty law.
3. Those in which the Federation is a party.
4. Those that arise between two or more States, or one State and the Federation, and those that arise between courts of the Federal District and those of the Federation or a State.
5. Those that arise between a State and one or more residents of another State.
6. All cases that involve members of the diplomatic and consular corps.
Article 105. The Supreme Court of Justice of the Nation has exclusive jurisdiction in all controversies that arise between two or more States, between the powers of one State concerning the constitutionality of their acts, and in disputes between the Federation and one or more States, and all those in which the Federation is a party.
Article 106. The Supreme Court of Justice shall likewise have the power to settle questions of jurisdiction that arise between courts of the Federation, between the latter and State courts, or between the courts of one State and those of another.
Article 107.All controversies mentioned in Article 103 shall be subject to the legal forms and procedure prescribed by law, on the following bases:
1. A trial in amparo shall always be held at the instance of the injured party.
2. The judgment shall always be such that it affects only private individuals, being limited to affording them redress and protection in the special case to which the complaint refers, without making any general declaration as to the law or act on which the complaint is based.
A defect in the complaint may be corrected, whenever the act complained of is based on laws declared unconstitutional by previous decisions of the Supreme Court of Justice.
A defect in the complaint may also be corrected in criminal matters and in behalf of workers in labor disputes, when it is found that there has been a manifest violation of the law against the injured party who is left without defense, and in criminal matters, likewise, when the trial has been based on a law not precisely applicable to the case.
In trials in amparo which contest acts that resulted or could result in depriving ejidos or population groups, or members of an ejido or communal holders having a de facto or de jure communal status, from ownership or possession and enjoyment of their lands, waters, pastures, and woodlands, defects in the complaint must be corrected as provided in regulations; and there shall be no abandonment, discontinuance due to inactivity, or lapse of the legal action, if the rights of ejidos or communal population groups are affected.
3. In judicial civil, criminal, or labor matters a writ of amparo shall be granted only:
- Against final judgments or awards against which no ordinary recourse is available by virtue of which these judgments can be modified or amended, whether the violation of the law is committed in the judgments or awards, or whether, if committed during the course of the trial, the violation prejudices the petitioner's defense to the extent of affecting the judgment; provided that in civil or criminal judicial matters opportune objection and protest were made against it because of refusal to rectify the wrong and that if (the violation) was committed in first instance, it was urged in second instance as a grievance.
- Against acts at the trial, the execution of which would be irreparable out of court, or at the conclusion of the trial once all available recourses have been exhausted.
- Against acts that affect persons who are strangers to the trial.
4. In administrative matters, amparo may be invoked against decisions which cause an injury that cannot be remedied through any legal recourse, trial, or defense. It shall not be necessary to exhaust these remedies when the law that established them, in authorizing the suspension of the contested act, demand greater requirements than the regulatory law for trials in amparo requires as a condition for ordering such suspension.
5. Except as provided in the following section, a writ of amparo against final decisions or awards, for violations committed therein shall be applied for directly to the Supreme Court of Justice, which shall render its decision without other evidence than the original complaint, a certified copy of the claims of the aggrieved party, which shall be added to those made by the third party affected, the latter's complaint submitted either by the Attorney General of the Republic or his designated agent, and that of the responsible authority.
6. A writ of amparo against final decision or awards shall be applied for directly to the Full Circuit Court (Tribunal Colegiado de Circuito) within whose jurisdiction is the domicile of the authority who pronounced the decision or award, whenever the complaint is based on substantial violations committed during the course of the trial or on civil or criminal judgments against which there is no recourse of appeal, regardless of what such alleged violations may be.
Whenever a writ of amparo is sought against final civil or criminal judgments or awards relating to labor matters, based on alleged substantial violations committed during the course of the trial or violations contained in the judgment or award, it must be invoked jointly for all such allegations, submitting the writ to the appropriate full circuit court, which shall render a decision solely with respect to the substantial violations during the trial, and if the judgment is unfavorable to the aggrieved party, shall remit the case to the Supreme Court of Justice to decide on the violations committed in the judgment or award.
As to the application and procedure in amparo cases before the full circuit court, the provisions of the preceding section shall be observed. When this procedure has been completed, a judgment shall be rendered according to the procedure prescribed by law.
7. When a writ of amparo is sought against acts at the trial, outside the trial or after its conclusion, or if persons foreign to the case are affected, against laws or against acts of administrative authorities, application shall be made to the district judge in whose jurisdiction is located the place in which the act in question was performed or was to be performed, and the procedure shall be limited to the report from the authority in question, to a hearing to which a single summons will include the order for submission of the report and for evidence to be presented by the interested parties and their allegations, the judgment to be rendered at this same hearing.
8. Judgments in amparo rendered by district judges are subject to review. The Supreme Court of Justice will review such judgments in the following cases:
- When a law is impugned as unconstitutional or if any of the cases included in sections II and III of Article 103 are concerned.
- Whenever the responsible authority against whom amparo is granted is a federal administrative authority.
- Whenever, in criminal cases, merely the violation of Article 22 of this Constitution is alleged.
- In all other cases the review will be made by a full circuit court and their decisions may not be appealed.
9. Decisions in direct amparo rendered by a full circuit court may not be appealed unless the decision involves the unconstitutionality of a law or establishes a direct interpretation of a provision of the Constitution, in which case it may be appealed to the Supreme Court of Justice, limited exclusively to the decision of actual constitutional questions.
A decision of a full circuit court may not be appealed if it is based on a precedent established by the Supreme Court of Justice as to the constitutionality of a law or the direct interpretation of a provision of the Constitution.
10. Contested acts may be subject to suspension in those cases and under conditions and guarantees specified by law, with respect to which account shall be taken of the nature of the alleged violation, the difficulty of remedying the damages that might be incurred by the aggrieved party by its performance, and damages that the suspension might cause to third parties and the public interest.
A suspension must be granted with respect to final judgments in criminal matters at the time notice is given of the application for a writ of amparo, and in civil matters when bond is posted by the complainant to cover liability for damages occasioned by the suspension, but this is waived if the other party gives bond (contrafianza) to ensure restoration of things as they were if amparo is granted and to pay resulting damages.
11. The suspension shall be requested from the responsible authority, in the case of direct amparo before the Supreme Court of Justice or the full circuit court, in which case the aggrieved party shall notify the responsible authority, within the period fixed by law and under affirmation to tell the truth, of the claim for amparo, accompanied by two copies, one for use in the case and the other to be transmitted to the opposing party. In other cases, decisions as to suspension shall be made by the district courts.
12. Violation of the guarantees set forth in Article 16, in criminal matters, and Articles 19 and 20 may be taken before the court above the one where it was committed, or before the appropriate district judge, and in either case the decision shall be rendered in accordance with the terms prescribed in section VIII.
If the district judge resides in the same place as the responsible authority, the law shall specify the judge before whom the writ of amparo is to be presented, and that judge may provisionally suspend the act in question, in those cases and under the terms established in the same law.
13. The law shall specify the terms and cases in which the precedents of the courts of the federal judicial branch are binding, as well as the requirements for their modification.
If the full circuit courts sustain contradictory opinions in amparo cases within their jurisdiction, the ministers of the Supreme Court of Justice, the Attorney General of the Republic, or those courts, may denounce the contradiction before the appropriate section, to decide which opinion shall prevail.
When the sections of the Supreme Court of Justice sustain contradictory opinions in cases of amparo within their jurisdiction, any one section or the Attorney General of the Republic may denounce the contradiction before the Supreme Court of Justice, which, sitting as a full court, shall decide which opinion shall prevail. Both in this instance and in the case provided for in the preceding paragraph, the decision rendered shall be solely for the effect of fixing the precedent and shall not affect the concrete juridical situation deriving from contradictory judgments in the case in which they were rendered.
14. When the contested act originated with civil or administrative authorities, and provided that the constitutionality of a law is not involved, proceedings will be discontinued by inactivity of the aggrieved party in those cases and according to terms indicated in the law regulating this article.
15. The Attorney General of the Republic or an agent of the federal public ministry appointed for the purpose, shall be a party in all suits in amparo, but they may abstain from intervening in such cases, if the matter in question lacks public interest, in their opinion.
16. If after amparo is granted, the responsible official persists in repetition of the contested act or attempts to evade the decision of the federal authority, he shall be immediately removed from office and taken before the appropriate District Judge.
17. The responsible authority will be taken before the appropriate authority whenever he fails to suspend the act when bound to do so, and when he posts bond that is invalid or insufficient, and in such cases the responsible authority and bondsman are jointly and severally liable.
18. Bailiffs and jailers who do not receive an authorized copy of the order of imprisonment of an arrested person within the seventy-two hours prescribed by Article 19, counted from the day the party was at the disposal of the judge, must notify the judge of this fact at the end of such period, and if the order is not received within three hours' the prisoner shall be released. Anyone violating the article cited in this provision will be immediately turned over to a competent authority.
Likewise, anyone who, after an arrest, does not take the arrested person before a judge within twenty-four hours, shall himself be turned over to such authority or his agent.
If the detention takes place outside the locality in which the judge resides, sufficient time is to be added to the above period to cover the distance involved.