Archive for the ‘elections’ Category

Chile: Matthei/Parisi vs Bachlet?

Saturday, October 19th, 2013

Gap closes between Parisi and Matthei as presidential race tightens

The way I see it, it’s Bachelet.

The election’s scheduled for November 17.

Venezuela: A circus without a ringmaster

Friday, July 5th, 2013

The Economist sizes it up:
Venezuela’s government
A circus without a ringmaster
Radicals, former soldiers and Cuban spies jostle for control of the Venezuelan ring

During the presidential election campaign, Mr Maduro was seen as the favoured candidate not just of his predecessor but also of Cuba, Venezuela’s closest ally. A month ago, however, Mr Cabello made a three-day visit to Havana, holding meetings with President Raúl Castro and his brother, Fidel. The trip came shortly after the leaking of the Silva recording. No one knows what sort of deal the Cubans may have struck with Mr Cabello. For the moment, he and Mr Maduro are locked in a macho Latin embrace, of the kind some say was devised as a way for each man to frisk the other for weapons.

Maduro was in Havana reviewing the promotions of military officers of the Venezuelan Armed Forces (h/t Babalu). Cuban intelligence officers are tracking Venezuela’s opposition. If there is a ringmaster, he’s most likely Cuban.

I mentioned a while ago that Maduro may not last long in power, and his successor may be Cabello, not Capriles. Only time will tell.

Over at the Carter Center, they’re having qualms over the quality of the voting conditions and whether every registered voter is able to vote one time, and only one time.

But fret not, unctuous Jimmy had already given his Seal of Approval to the Venezuela Election.

Venezuela: You call that an audit?

Monday, April 22nd, 2013

As announced last week, Venezuela’s electoral council (CNE) is going to self-audit.

That will not change the results of the “election” one iota.

Just to clear any doubts, let’s hear it from CNE chief Tibisay Lucena, who told Venezuelans (my translation. If you use it, please credit me and link to this post) to,

don’t harbor false expectations since the approved audit is to show that the technological platform works perfectly well and that the results are true to the voters’ will.

Don’t believe me? Here it is in Spanish,

“no se hagan falsas expectativas ya que la auditoría aprobada es para demostrar que la plataforma tecnológica funciona perfectamente y que los resultados son fiel reflejo de la voluntad de los votantes”.

If Maduro completes his 6-year term, Venezuela would have had 20 years of Chavismo.

Venezuela: Electoral council agrees to audit itself UPDATED

Friday, April 19th, 2013

Venezuela Vote Faces Review, namely, the CNE (the electoral council) will wait until after Maduro’s inaugurated, and

Details of the audit were unclear. Ms. Lucena said the revision would be electronic and wasn’t the same as a recount, which is what the opposition had demanded following the election. “This should not be interpreted as any sort of ‘scrutiny,’” she said in televised comments.

Which, from the looks of it, means that they’ll just go over some data from the electronic voting machines while ignoring the paper ballots, fingerprint data, and the voting location records.

Or something.

Do keep in mind that all Venezuelan institutions are 100% chavista-controlled.

Daniel Duquenal is equally skeptical,

I do not want to offer any opinion because it is a complex matter to evaluate how good the news really is. Capriles team seems happy with it so for the time being let’s roll. However I will note that the CNE is talking of 30 days of audit and who knows how many more for a final verdict. In short the regime is accepting an audit as long as it gives it time to come up with a better strategy to confront the opposition and smash it down before the result is out. At least that is my worry at this time as a one week audit should already generate enough info to see if it is worth going on.

Over in Peru, Chavez’s brainchild UNASUR stands by Maduro, which comes as no surprise.

Or, is it a recount? Read the post and comments at Devil’s Excrement.

Venezuela: No recount, says Supreme Court

Thursday, April 18th, 2013

Hardly surprising,

Venezuela’s Supreme Court on Wednesday rejected calls for a recount of the country’s disputed presidential vote, even as the opposition submitted reports of thousands of alleged irregularities and the U.S. government reiterated its call for a new tally of ballots.

The opposition was given no chance to present evidence

And as the military has been pressuring Maduro to allow a recount, the Impostor-President had none other than the President of the Venezuelan Supreme Court, Luisa Estela Morales, issue her already formed opinion, once again without the legal arguments being presented at the time in her Court.

Over in Rome, Venezuela’s ambassador to Italy, Julián Isaías Rodríguez Díaz, posed for the cameras holding the Cuban flag,


Solidarity with Maduro, indeed.

Venezuela: US not so sure

Wednesday, April 17th, 2013

Venezuela opposition fears crackdown, U.S. wavers on Maduro; says John Kerry,

“We think there ought to be a recount,” Secretary of State John Kerry told U.S. lawmakers. “Obviously, if there are huge irregularities, we are going to have serious questions about the viability of that government … I’m not sure that’s over yet.”

Meanwhile, Cabello’s cautioning the US to “hold its tongue,” and stay out of Venezuela’s business.

Charming guy, that Cabello.

On his part, Maduro’s threatening to arrest Capriles (link in Spanish) for inciting rebellion. Let’s not forget that Venezuela has a law against anyone impeding the revolution.

Additionally, a source told El Herald that Maduro wants to charge Capriles for the murder of the seven demonstrators who died yesterday.

Over at Drudge,


Chavez heir charges US behind unrest over vote…

Capriles distances himself from violent protests…

Gov’t backers wreak havoc in Venezuelan town…

The situation is hazardous enough that Capriles urged people to only do cacerolazos (bang on pots and pans) and stay safe. His latest tweet,

“All remain calm, don’t allow yourselves to be provoked by officials and infiltrators promoting conflicts!”

Has chavismo run out of gas? Not until it runs out of oil.

Venezuela: the military ask for recount?

Tuesday, April 16th, 2013

After I wrote this morning’s post, M sent me this,

Sectors of the mlitary pressuring Maduro and CNE [electoral council] for a 100% recount. Meetings in development.

That’s Univision reporter Casto Ocando‘s tweet one hour ago.


Venezuela: For the short term, more moving to FL

Tuesday, April 16th, 2013

Doral expects new wave of Venezuelan immigrants

After disputed presidential elections in Venezuelan, Doral can expect a new wave of immigrants from the South American country who could increase the population by 40 percent in the next two years, Mayor Luigi Boria said Monday.

The number of Venezuelans could jump from nearly 50,000 residents to about 70,000 by 2015, Boria said.

Tensions Surge in Venezuela After Vote
Chávez Successor Sworn In Despite Calls by Opposition, U.S. for a Recount

Tension in Venezuela rose sharply Monday after the government reneged on its promise to carry out a full recount of the bitterly contested presidential vote and declared acting President Nicolás Maduro as president-elect.

The opposition, pointing to irregularities in the election, said it wouldn’t recognize the result and began to demonstrating across the country, as the U.S. urged a vote recount.

Some 100,000 expatriate ballots haven’t yet been counted as part of the tally. In the past they have overwhelmingly backed the opposition.

Sunday night, after Electoral Council President Tibisay Lucena announced Maduro’s victory as “irreversible”, Council member Vicente Díaz remained on the podium and requested a full recount and audit of the results due to “a number of irregularities” (video in Spanish),

Yesterday Vicente Diaz decided not to go to the proclamation of Maduro as president.

However, there can not be a recount, as ballot boxes have been destroyed, according to Venezuelan twitterers,

Diosdado Cabello, head of the National Assembly, has already asserted that “there will be no vote-by-vote recount; that’s just a whim of the bourgeoisie.”

One thing is clear from the election: Chavismo will not relinquish power through democratic means.

Caracas Chronicles lists the protests across the country.

The rigged Venezuelan election Carnival of Latin America and the Caribbean

Monday, April 15th, 2013

In Venezuela, Nicolas Maduro, at least according to the chavista-controlled board of election, won last night. Henrique Capriles Radonski demanded a recount, asserting that electoral fraud had taken place. Here’s his speech last night (in Spanish),

Watch live streaming video from venezuelasomostodos at

In his speech, Capriles said he wants the Cuban military out of Venezuela’s government and institutions. As Mary O’Grady said, The Castro regime wasn’t going to allow an easy victory for the opposition candidate who has pledged to stop sending oil to Havana.

By now, ballot boxes are turning up,

Maduro’s acceptance speech was a double dose of crazy.

Argentina’s economy
Gaucho blues
A dollar shortage bites

Via The Argentine Post, a link I missed when it was first posted,
Argentina’s Plan for Iran

Brazilian state of Acre in illegal immigration alert
The Brazilian state of Acre has declared a state of emergency after a surge of illegal immigrants from neighbouring Bolivia and Peru.

Chile poet Pablo Neruda’s remains to be tested in US
The family of the Nobel Prize-winning Chilean poet Pablo Neruda has agreed to send his remains to a laboratory in the United States for toxicology tests.

FARC links with Al-Qaeda?

Evidence has emerged of a link between the FARC and Islamist terrorist groups in the North African Maghreb after two Colombian nationals were arrested in Algeria last month by the US Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) and Spanish intelligence services.

Colombian authorities row over Farc jail terms
Colombia’s attorney-general has said members of the rebel group Farc could escape jail terms should a peace deal be struck.

Colombia’s emerald king
Death of a tsar

Via DP, National holiday turns violent as families blocked from president’s speech
Costa Ricans outraged that they weren’t allowed to attend the annual Juan Santamaría Day festivities in an Alajuela park.

In Spanish: Jaime Bayly entrevista al bloguero cubano Orlando Luis Pardo Lazo,

Time to Occupy Beyonce and Jay-Z

US Treasury OFAC: Send Beyoncé and Jay-Z an Anniversary Present

Rosa Maria Payá denounces death threats against her and her family.
Rosa Maria Payá holds the Cuban government responsible for whatever may happen to her and her family.

Quito’s new airport
A tight fit

Smoke from nearby forest fires forces 4-hour closure of airport for Honduras’ capital

Puerto Rican jury rejects death sentence in police killing


Mexico Is Picking Up the Peso
Reforms, Search for Risk Are Boosting the Currency; ‘a Cultish Characteristic’

Mexican Proposal to Allow Foreigners to Own Coastal Property

Rural development in Peru
The Andean connection
Diminishing distance, falling poverty

Puerto Rico protects top US turtle nesting site long eyed by developers

Puerto Rico Agrees To Pay More Than $35 Million In Back Wages To Thousands Of Workers

Politics in Suriname
Guerrilla, rapper, gold miner…president?

Uruguay president ‘sorry’ for Fernandez ‘old hag’ quip
The President of Uruguay, Jose Mujica, has apologised for apparently referring to Argentine President Cristina Fernandez de Kirchner as an “old hag”.

Luis Alberto Lacalle, abogado y presidente de la Republica Oriental del Uruguay de 1990 a 1995 envia un afectuoso saludo a la Fundacion HACER de Washington DC desde el 25 Aniversario de la Fundacion Libertad de Rosario

Maduro and Capriles: tale of two Venezuelan presidential candidates

Venezuela’s presidential election
Voting in St Hugo’s shadow
In his search for a popular mandate, Nicolás Maduro ascribes divine powers to his predecessor but offers few earthly policies

Venezuelan blogs for their complete coverage:
Caracas chronicles
Devil’s excrement
Venezuela Nr=ews and Views

The week’s posts and podcast,
Venezuela: Maduro wins

Venezuela: two election day live feeds

A word on elected Latin American dictators

Venezuela: How important is tomorrow’s election? UPDATED

If you are in Hialeah tonight: Rosa María Payá event

OLPL en el show de Bayly

G-r-o-s-s: Bolivarian “sanitary” towels

Venezuela: Capriles Campaign Chief killed

Venezuela: The meaning of April 14 UPDATED

Cuba this morning

Venezuela: Violent deaths per 100,000

Talking with Silvio Canto.

Venezuela: Maduro wins

Sunday, April 14th, 2013

Official results:

The electoral board announcement was pushed back over and over, with the TV anchors talking on and on. Venevision even showed their entire crew.

By 11:10PM (10:40 Caracas time), Globovision said that no announcement could be made until the number of uncounted votes was smaller than the difference between the candidates, which, at that late hour pointed to a close election.

Finally, almost at midnight, after repeated appeals for calm, the announcement, as I predicted.

Venezuela’s Cuban Election
The Castro regime wasn’t going to allow an easy victory for the opposition candidate who has pledged to stop sending oil to Havana.

Over 370,000 null votes, and have not added overseas votes,

@NoticiasCaracol tweeted “Maduro got 7,505,338 votes, 50.66%, 234,935 more than opposition candidate Henrique Capriles, who got 7,270,403.”

Linked by Hot Air. Thank you!