Colombia and the rule of law

As readers of this blog know, the Colombian Supreme Court rejected Alvaro Uribe’s bid for running for a third term in office. The democratic system worked.

Today the Wall Street Journal has an article on how,
A Latin Role Model
Colombia’s political class follows the rule of law.

Mr. Uribe will now leave office in August after eight years that mark him as one of Colombia’s, and the world’s, most consequential modern leaders. Inheriting a ruthless insurgency, he emphasized military strength and professionalism that has restored order and security to most of the country. Kidnapping and murders rates have dropped sharply, and it is now safe to travel on most highways. By improving the investment climate, he has helped modernize an economy that was backward for too long.

But the manner of his departure shows that his most important achievement may have been to boost Colombian confidence in its democratic institutions. With Mr. Uribe’s approval above 65%, the legislature passed a law that would have let him run for a third term he undoubtedly would have won. But the court ruled against the law on procedural grounds regarding the collection of petition signatures needed to introduce the law and the way the bill moved through Congress. It also said that the law violated the constitution.

It is a huge achievement in our hemisphere, and we are all thankful to Uribe for his accomplishments.

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