Friday, December 3

Venezuela votes in the elections with the best makeup of Chavismo


Caracas

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Chavismo is taking firm steps in the electoral race and seems to be very sure of the results that could give him another turn in the nut that keeps him in power. Nicolas Maduro He is preparing another electoral farce in a mega-election to legitimize his leadership and bury that of the opposition. This time, the Venezuelan regime boasts some glimpses of freedom due to the arrival of international observers and experts. But these elections are organized again by the National Electoral Council (CNE), whose authorities were elected this year by Chavismo in their image and likeness and drag the tricks of previous rectors to favor the Venezuelan regime with truncated and rigged results. Chavismo sees its triumph in this process that has not stopped being questioned and seeks to gain control of the largest number of entities.

In regional and municipal elections, 23 states, 335 mayors, 253 legislative councils and 2,471 municipal councils are at stake, for a total of 3,082 positions, according to CNE figures. The electoral body authorities said that in these elections 70,244 candidates from 37 national parties compete, of which 329 candidates are distributed for the 23 governorates, 4,462 for the mayors and 65,453 for the legislative assemblies and municipal councils. Since the 2017 regional elections, the Maduro regime controls 18 governorates, while the opposition ruled five.

Maduro’s tricks

The elections come in a context in which Chavismo and a sector of the opposition sat face to face in August at a negotiation table that took place in Mexico, and there they agreed to go to elections. In this new game, the norms of which were imposed -as usual- by the Maduro government, the opposition requested conditions for there to be guarantees and transparent elections. In return, the chavismo requested the lifting of the sanctions international

Maduro sang some promises to seduce his detractors and announced the elimination of the ‘protectors of states’, figures imposed by Chavismo, who functioned as parallel governors and as a counter-power in the entities that the opposition won in the 2017 regional elections. These ‘protectors’ took away powers and managed the budget of the governorates of Táchira, Mérida, Nueva Esparta and Anzoátegui, the only ones in the hands of the opposition.

Headquarters of the National Electoral Council (CNE) – EFE

The electoral fraud It also has its epicenter in the disqualification of political actors who criticize Chavismo. In February, almost 30 opposition leaders who are concentrated under the figure of interim president Juan Guaidó were disqualified for 15 years from holding public office. The regime’s decision was nothing more than an old practice of Chavismo to respond to international sanctions from countries that do not recognize Maduro as a legitimate president and a tactic to remove potential rivals from the game.

Maduro had already thrown his cards in June and with the intention of minimizing the most influential parties in the country, he kidnapped the cards of important political parties for the opposition. The names and symbols of the historic Acción Democrática and Primero Justicia were taken from them by the Supreme Court of Venezuela and taken by opposition dissidents who were bought by Chavismo. For the skeptical former president of the CNE, Andrés Caleca, that was a totalitarian turn in the South American country. “In Venezuela elections will be held with (252) political prisoners, with the leadership disabled and after this perverse government confiscated parties, which are now in the hands of political traffickers,” Caleca tells ABC.

55% abstention

The Datanálisis firm foresees a 45% participation of the voters who are in the country, and sees in advance that Chavismo will remain with most of the governorates as four years ago. Luis Vicente León, director of the polling station, tells this newspaper that participation may be even lower when the CNE recalculates the electoral roll: there are registered voters but they are no longer in the country and their participation does not count. “In general terms, Venezuela is an opposition country, but the opposition has lost strength due to abstention because it has said for years that voting is ‘bad’ and ‘collaborationist'”. On the other hand, “the Chavistas always have a much greater willingness to vote.”

The firm Meganálisis coincides with the projections of Datanálisis. In his last survey the participation did not reach 30%. In Caleca’s opinion, traditionally these elections do not generate much enthusiasm in voters because they are local authorities: “Even under democratic conditions, those who vote are between 50% and 60%.”

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