Caturday felid: El gato Morris runs for mayor of a Mexican city

It’s about time we started putting cats in elective office. According to many amused sources, Morris, a Mexican tuxedo cat, is running for mayor of the town of Xalapa, the capital of Veracruz province.  In fact, other animals in Mexico are following his lead.

According to ABC News:

Morris, a black-and-white kitten [JAC: not a kitten] with orange eyes, is running for mayor of Xalapa in eastern Mexico with the campaign slogan “Tired of Voting for Rats? Vote for a Cat.” And he is attracting tens of thousands of politician-weary, two-legged supporters on social media.

“He sleeps almost all day and does nothing, and that fits the profile of a politician,” said 35-year-old office worker Sergio Chamorro, who adopted the 10-month-old feline last year.

Put forth as a candidate by Chamorro and a group of friends after they became disillusioned with the empty promises of politicians, Morris’ candidacy has resonated across Mexico, where citizens frustrated with human candidates are nominating their pets and farm animals to run in July 7 elections being held in 14 states.

Also running for mayor are “Chon the Donkey” in the border city of Ciudad Juarez, “Tina the Chicken” in Tepic, the capital of the Pacific coast state of Nayarit, “Maya the Cat” in the city of Puebla and “Tintan the Dog” in Oaxaca City, though their campaigns are not as well organized as that of Morris.

. . .Morris has a website, a Twitter account and a Facebook page with more than 115,000 ‘likes,’ that makes him more popular in social networks than the five human mayoral contenders. Americo Zuniga, the candidate for the ruling party who is leading in election polls, had 33,000 Facebook ‘likes’ as of Friday.

His website has a collection of memes that picture Morris yawning while describing his “ample legislative experience,” an image that mirrors photographs of lawmakers sleeping during congressional sessions.

Heeere’s Morris. Who wouldn’t vote for a cat this lovely? Look at those eyes!
Morris the cat
Here’s a screenshot from Morris’s Facebook page, “El Candigato Morris“:
Screen shot 2013-06-21 at 1.40.55 PM
Morris’s website (in Spanish and English) is here, with lots of cool campaign posters and other information. His Twitter feed is here.
A few campaign posters (Morris is running on an anti-rat platform):
playera-obeymorris
No-más-ratoas
STICKER-FINAL-1
The news is worldwide, and it shows you the power of the felid. Tintan the Dog  isn’t getting near the worldwide press as Morris.

It started as a joke between friends, but Morris the cat’s bid to become mayor of the Mexican city of Xalapa, the capital of the state of Veracruz, has now turned into a social media phenomenon with a serious message about political disenchantment.

“Morris has become an expression of how fed up people are with all the parties and a political system that does not represent us,” said Sergio Chamorro, the owner of the furry black-and-white candidate whose first campaign slogan was: “Tired of voting for rats? Vote for a cat.”

The Facebook page for the Candigato (gato means cat in Spanish) now has more than 130,000 “likes” – far more than those accrued by any of the candidates registered to stand in the Xalapa election, and more too than those of Veracruz’s current governor. Mexico will hold local elections in around half of the country on 7 July.

Morris’s Facebook page and website are filled with artwork, videos and slogans sent in by supporters from all over Mexico and beyond. Spin-off Twitter accounts have sprouted too, beyond the control of Chamorro and the small group of thirtysomething professionals who have run Morris’s campaign since his popularity took off earlier this month.

h/t: Nichole and others whom I forgotten but thank anyway

14 Comments

  1. Becca Stareyes
    Posted June 22, 2013 at 6:22 am | Permalink

    If one is sick of King Storks, a King Log would seem pretty good. And a cat makes a good King Log, given how much they can nap.

    Also, whose a pretty mayoral candidate? He is!

  2. Posted June 22, 2013 at 6:33 am | Permalink

    I used to make the joke that if the president of the USA is the most powerful man on Earth, then his cat would be the most powerful living being on Earth.

    • Hempenstein
      Posted June 22, 2013 at 6:53 am | Permalink

      Except that Presidents usually have dogs.

      • Posted June 22, 2013 at 6:56 am | Permalink

        Which actually proves my point. US presidents like to (think to) be in charge, therefore they prefer dogs to cats. Dogs, unlike cats, are willingly to accept humans as their leaders.

        • Hempenstein
          Posted June 22, 2013 at 3:03 pm | Permalink

          Dogs, unlike cats, are willing to do something useful in return, like guard the premises, for instance.

          • SA Gould
            Posted June 22, 2013 at 4:59 pm | Permalink

            Cats perform equally useful services, like reminding us daily, to “get over ourselves” and do something that benefits others. Such as feeding them or cleaning their litterboxes.

            • Posted June 23, 2013 at 2:48 am | Permalink

              My father’s cat is quite useful as wake-up call.

  3. Garnetstar
    Posted June 22, 2013 at 9:28 am | Permalink

    Would cats be successful legislators, better than many humans? Would cats, for example, have voted to drag us into the Iraq war?

    That didn’t take long. Case closed.

  4. Posted June 22, 2013 at 10:35 am | Permalink

    The cat would easily get my vote

    • Posted June 23, 2013 at 2:47 am | Permalink

      Cats are at least not corrupt.

      • Posted June 23, 2013 at 3:43 am | Permalink

        The only problem we will have with cats is when they have to append their signature to legislation, they may just walk away!

  5. Posted June 23, 2013 at 7:29 am | Permalink

    Win or lose, I just hope that this will turn out to have been a flea and fur election…

    • Posted June 23, 2013 at 11:53 am | Permalink

      My guess is the cat will get in – by a whisker.


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