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An Election Fraud as Big as the Ritz

Last week, the government announced that addressing the country’s deep-seated economic distortions…just wasn’t something they were going to worry about. A few days have passed since the economic non-announcements that made this patently clear. So what does this tell us about the political road ahead? That the 2015 National Assembly elections are going to be rigged. Big time.…

Carrasquero

Ten years of funk

Today marks the tenth anniversary of the day the opposition lost its groove. On August 15th, 2004, a recall referendum on Hugo Chávez’s rule was held. The referendum came on the heels of massive protests, numerous roadblocks, and a populist spending binge that marked the chavista approach to governance until this day. After numerous hours…

CNE-rectores-980

Playing Hardball on the CNE appointments

The MUD has been getting a lot of flack lately for not getting things done. But the opposition alliance continues to use what little institutional maneuvering room it has to fight the good fight. Much of this flies under the radar, and it’ll never filter out into broader public attention, but at least the political…

Carter Hugo

Bland to the bone

The Carter Center has just published a sprawling, 118-page report on the 2013 Presidential Elections in Venezuela (see PDF here in Spanish). It goes through what happened in that dramatic election using the scrupulously impartial, non-controversial tone of an organization trying to remain an honest broker between the two warring factions. Now, normally I would pass this off as…

Patricia Ceballos

Polls vs. chavismo vs. guarimbas vs. naysayers

Today, two by-elections were held in the cities of San Cristóbal and San Diego. In both cities, the opposition mayors – elected a few months ago by huge margins – were indicted and jailed in quickie trials for allegedly not doing enough to stem opposition protests. The MUD coalition quickly decided that the candidates for…

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Rationing the secrecy of the vote

Buenos Aires’ La Nación newspaper has a thorough feature story on the Tarjeta de Abastecimiento Seguro, the government’s new fingerprint-activated card to control how much you can buy at government stores. For example, did you know the CNE is behind the whole operation? And that when you register for the card, they ask for a…

Maduro desde mi corazon

The longest election

One year ago today, Nicolás Maduro was elected President of Venezuela. One year ago, Henrique Capriles was elected President of Venezuela, and Nicolás Maduro stole the election. It’s safe to say that each and every Venezuelan believes one of those two things. Venezuela’s drama is that each one of the camps of believers is extremely large. With…