Chavismo expropriates PPT and PODEMOS

In March, we reported that Chavismo was out to take control of two of its former political allies – Patria para Todos (PPT) and PODEMOS – that have turned their backs on the revolution and joined the opposition. Today the Supreme Court did exactly that.

In formally unrelated (but, c’mon!) decisions, TSJ gave control of both parties to their rump chavista factions (PPT-Maneiro and former Aragua governor Didalco Bolívar, respectively).

The timing was perfect, as the official registration period for October’s presidential election is due to close on Monday next week. The goal, of course, is to keep them from using their party cards on the October ballot to support Henrique Capriles.

In one decision, the Electoral Chamber of the TSJ voided PPT’s internal elections and named a temporary head for the party. The ruling also ordered the party to hold new elections to pick party leaders within the next 90 days. The way the timing works out, that makes it impossible for PPT to back Henrique Capriles on the October ballot.

Hours later, the Constitutional Chamber accepted Didalco Bolívar’s claim that he and not Ismael Garcia is the leader of PODEMOS. The decision bars PODEMOS from endorsing Capriles as well and giving Bolívar full control of the party, including its headquarters in Caracas, which have often been used by the MUD in recent times.

That was not a mere coincidence or a matter of chance. Si no ganan, arrebatan!

PPT and PODEMOS were key parts of Henrique Capriles’ coalition in the primaries. By snatching both parties’ names and colors, Chavismo is out to enmasculate them, and the leftie street-cred they contributed to Capriles. With both parties probably out of the game now, Lara governor Henri Falcon rushed to set up a new party, Avanzada Progresista, which was approved by the CNE just days ago.

The decision showcases just how far Hugo Chavez is willing to go to punish those he sees as traitors.

[Hat Tip: CACR]

13 thoughts on “Chavismo expropriates PPT and PODEMOS

  1. The whole thing is completely shameless. Bolivar’s attorney did not file her power of attorney nor a certified copy of the decision she wanted to overturn along with the writ of certiorari(revisión), which are necessary for admissibility according to law. This should lead to the writ being dismissed, but the Chamber ruled that because it was a matter involving constitutional rights they nevertheless overruled the decision. (Thats a very crappy reasoning because of the cases before the Chamber involve constitutional rights, that’s why its called the Constitutional Chamber) Ya ni se molestan en arman bien los parapetos.

  2. We’ll need some pretty damn good pest control companies to disinfect and clean many places, the venezuelan supreme court is one of those places.

  3. Obviously they are concerned and felt threatened enough at the prospect of two small parties supporting Capriles.  

    It was a good move, you have to hand it to them.  

    The game is on!  

  4. This move strikes me as particularly offensive. I realize from a Venezuelan perspective, this is just another in a long line of insults… from my Yankee view this is the point where I question whether Venezuela should even be called a democracy anymore. Of course Republic vs Dictatorship is not an absolute, every society exists somewhere on a continuum but this is beyond the pale.

    Simply holding an election does not make a country a democracy, even North Korea has elections. Once parties have their leadership determined by pro-regime judicial fiat, they are no longer independent parties as exist in a normal parliamentary democracy, but parties exactly like North Korea has (yes, North Korea officially has three “political parties”).

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Politics_of_North_Korea#Political_parties_and_elections

    Sadly, you guys are on your own. If the US can’t muster up enough support or will to stop a massacre in Syria, there’s no chance of a response from anyone on this sort of thing in Venezuela. So far as I can tell, Brazil and the rest of South America don’t care as long as there is some kind of election to point at and they keep getting some of Venezuela’s petrodollars.

    Considering that, I wonder why Chavismo is not going even further in its assault on the opposition. Why stop with this, they don’t think it’s necessary? Anxiety about seeming too authoritarian to average Venezuelans?

    • An old article from the economist, very á propos (http://www.economist.com/node/21548933):

      “Most manipulators make only sparing use of blatant election-day frauds [...] a more frequent tactic is to alter election laws, often as a means of deterring opposition candidates or gerrymandering unlosable constituencies.
      [...]
      Also more common are attempts to influence the genuine choices of voters—frequently through vote-buying, using state resources in campaigning, and exploiting partisan media.
      [...]
      Some fraud masquerades as incompetence [...] Too few voting slips, patchy voter lists, and long queues at polling stations distort elections as surely as burnt ballot boxes and bribes. Yet election observers are likely to withhold their worst scoldings if the line between cock-up and corruption is unclear”

      However, chavismo is very ingenuous when it comes to cheating. They have come up with new things, such as closing unfavorable polling stations abroad (i.e. Miami consulate), and stealing political parties using the Supreme Court as fassade. If they’d only use such ingenuity to solve actual problems in Venezuela, we’d be already a developed nation!

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