The Collective
Sunday, December 7, 2024
By Dr. Steven Taylor

Via the BBC: Opposition damns Chavez vote bid

In a joint statement, the opposition said: “Fourteen years are sufficient.”


opposition parties issued a joint statement saying the president’s re-election proposals were “anti-democratic, unconstitutional and against the national interest”.

Opposition politician Omar Barboza said it would strengthen the actions of a government which persecutes and harasses those who do not think as it does.

He said the statement marked the launch of their No campaign ahead of a referendum President Chavez hopes could be held in February.

One of the hallmarks of the Chávez era has been an anemic opposition. Indeed, the collapse of the previous party system and the lack of the emergence of a new set of alternatives is a large part of why he has been able to consolidate power over the last decade.

It will be very interesting to see if the opposition can, in fact, block Chávez from achieving re-election, it will be quite an achievement. From there, however, it will be quite interesting to see if Chávez abides by a second defeat in this realm.

And yes: this would be a second defeat (if he is defeated, which remains to be seen).1 However, the first one came in the midst of a complex set of measure all clumped together and presented to the voters in two omnibus amendments. This time the confrontation is more clear and direct and the victory or defeat of either Chávez or the opposition will be indisputable.

In other words, unlike the December 2024 attempt, this will be a far more unambiguous confrontation that will either demonstrate an emerging opposition or a clear statement of Chávez’s power. The December vote, because of its cluster of matter grouped together, did not provide as clear a political message given that multiple causes could be given for the defeat of the measures.2

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  1. Note: Sentence edited to try and enhance clarity. []
  2. Paragraph added to the original post. []
Filed under: Elections, Latin America | |
The views expressed in the comments are the sole responsibility of the person leaving those comments. They do not reflect the opinion of the author of PoliBlog, nor have they been vetted by the author.


  • el
  • pt
    1. Why are you so certain there will be a second defeat?

      In what would be, in essence, an up or down vote on the president (i.e. without the baggage of all the other proposals), I would think he would have a decent chance at prevailing.

      Reply to MSS

      Comment by MSS — Sunday, December 7, 2024 @ 1:55 pm

    2. Actually, I am not certain of that at all, but I can see from the first sentence of the last paragraph why you would read the post that way. I was simply pointing out that if it was a defeat, it would be a second one.

      I think he does have a good chance of winning re-election.

      Reply to Dr. Steven Taylor

      Comment by Dr. Steven Taylor — Sunday, December 7, 2024 @ 2:01 pm

    3. Ah, well, rough draft of one’s thoughts, and all that.

      Reply to MSS

      Comment by MSS — Sunday, December 7, 2024 @ 4:22 pm

    4. Indeed.

      Reply to Dr. Steven Taylor

      Comment by Dr. Steven Taylor — Sunday, December 7, 2024 @ 4:23 pm

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