Jennifer Bernal Thanks, Kathleen! I agree that Vazquez Mota has many good qualities. She hasn't, however, been able to sell herself very well. Mexicans see her as hard-working but frail. During her stint as Education Secretary, she was repeatedly outmaneuvered by the influential head of the teachers' union. JVM also wasn't helped by her two first debate performances, where she appeared stiff and unimaginative. You also mention the poverty program deployed by the government agency JVM used to head. Oportunidades evolved out of a previous government program called Progresa that started in 1997. Mexicans have certainly taken advantage of it: between 20 to 30% of the country's population is currently covered by the program.
Jennifer Bernal Hi Christine, I'd like to offer a point of correction -- it's not true that the JOBS Act prohibits entrepreneurs from raising funds through crowdsourcing. The Merkley amendment that the Senate passed narrowed the crowdfunding provisions, it's true. But it did so by lowering the cap on the money that could be raised by these means and by requiring that intermediary platforms that will be used for crowdfunding register with the SEC. In sum, the House bill crowdfunding provisions were definitely more promising for startups, but I'd argue the revised ones are better than the status quo.