Former Mexican president Miguel de la Madrid has confirmed what rivals long suspected: His political party stole the 1988 election that put Carlos Salinas Gortari in power. Salinas was the candidate of the Institutional Revolutionary Party, which ruled the country for 71 years. Early election results in the capital indicated that Salinas was getting trounced by the opposition candidate, Cuauhtemoc Cardenas. I felt like a bucket of ice water had fallen on me, de la Madrid wrote in an excerpt from his memoirs, published this week in the newspaper Reforma. To beat Cardenas to the punch, the ruling party quickly declared its candidate the winner. Three years later, lawmakers ordered the ballots burned.