Enrique Pena Nieto, Mexico's presidential candidate for the Institutional Revolutionary Party, PRI, center, greets supporter as he arrives for a meeting with members of the party in Mexico City, Thursday, Feb. 9, 2012. Mexico will hold presidential elections next July 1. (AP Photo/Alexandre Meneghini)AP2012
Presidential candidate Enrique Peña Nieto is not a womanizer, but he is "addicted to women," Mexican journalist Alberto Tavira, who just published a book about the politician based on interviews with women who have been close to him, told Efe.
"He needs to have them, to feel protected and to place power in them," the author of "Las mujeres de Peña Nieto" (Peña Nieto's Women) said.
The women featured in the book, which hit bookstores less than five months before the election, were interviewed over a number of years and provide new insights into the Institutional Revolutionary Party, or PRI, candidate, who polls show is the favorite to win the July 1 presidential election.
Yessica, Socorro, Veronica, Ana Cecilia, Monica, Rebecca, Angelica, Nicole, Paulina and Sofia are the sisters, mother, girlfriends, wife, daughters and stepdaughters who give their take on Peña Nieto and their experiences with the politician.
"Each one tells a different story about him and gives a portrait of a very different Peña Nieto. For some of them, the perfect lover, for others a traitor or unfaithful. Through them you can put together a flesh and blood person with good things and bad things," Tavira said.
The candidate's mother, Socorro "Coco" Nieto, who Tavira says is the woman who has influenced him the most, brought him up to be the heir to a political dynasty so he could become the public figure he is today.
The book discusses some controversial matters, including the two children, one of whom died at the age of 2 from cancer, that Peña Nieto fathered out of wedlock while married to Monica Pretelini, who died in 2007.
Peña Nieto has always described himself, however, as a staunch Catholic with conservative values.
"He is addicted to the feminine gender, but not to use them, since he makes them very happy when he is with them, he takes them to heaven and later hell, which is the difficult and tragic part," Tavira said, adding that Peña Nieto was a "natural seducer" who "has a charisma and bearing that dazzle men and women."
The title page features a photo of the presidential hopeful with Pretelini, whose last few months of life, according to Peña Nieto's sister and spiritual adviser, were marked by tremendous suffering and highlighted his love for her and infidelity.
Power is "the most stable relationship" for Peña Nieto, who "has placed politics before his own family and love life," Tavira said.
The pursuit of power and ambition have carried "a very high cost," as reflected in Peña Nieto's bad relationship with his son, Alejandro, the person least enamored of his father's career and marriage to actress Angelica Rivera, the journalist said.
Rivera is "the perfect woman for election time," the woman Peña Nieto needed to appear to be the candidate with the ideal family, Tavira said.