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Revista mexicana de opinión pública

versión On-line ISSN 2448-4911versión impresa ISSN 1870-7300


HERNANDEZ MORALES, Alan Salvador. Punitive Populism and Public Opinion: Trust in Mexican Security Institutions. Rev. mex. opinión pública [online]. 2023, n.35, pp.75-97.  Epub 05-Feb-2024. ISSN 2448-4911.

This research analyzes the perception that citizens have in the institutions in charge of security in Mexico, in order to know why, despite their general poor performance, military institutions such as the Army, the Navy and the National Guard are considered to be more trustworthy by the Mexican society, in contrast to civilian institutions, such as police forces. For this purpose, the theoretical perspective of punitive populism was applied, as it suggests that government security strategies are not based on the pretension of solving criminality, but rather on the purpose of influencing the public opinion process to encourage citizen tolerance towards State violence. Based on the results obtained from an inferential statistical analysis, it is argued that people’s trust in Mexican security institutions is not based on an evaluation of their effectiveness in reducing insecurity, but rather on citizens’ attachment to certain values such as nationalism and their preference for a government that conducts itself with a “strong hand” to protect the community from possible threats.

Palabras llave : Punitive populism; public opinion; institutional trust; Armed Forces; National Guard; Police.

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