Smiling and victorious, Felipe Calderon worked a crowd of supporters in Mexico City Tuesday night after an electoral tribunal confirmed his slim victory in a bitter election battle with leftist Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador.
Calderon called for the country to unify, and look to future battles against crime, poverty and unemployment.
Across town in the pouring rain, the mood at Lopez Obrador's ralley — which took place at the very same time as Calderon's — was defiant. Over the past few weeks, fewer people have been attending his daily speeches. But those who were there Tuesday night said they would follow him to the end.
And Lopez Obrador is asking them to do just that. He says he will create an alternative government, refusing to accept Calderon as president.
Dozens of lawmakers from Lopez Obrador's party pledged before the crowd to do the same, with some vowing to disrupt Calderon's inaguartaion on December 1.
Calderon's choices appear stark. He can use force to assert the power of his win, or do nothing and hope Lopez Obrador's movement loses steam. That's something the leftist's followers vow will never happen.