A warning for the Venezuela opposition
Monday 29, March 2004
Although comparing the French politics to the Venezuelan politics is rather unfair, in the regional French elections of yesterday there is knowledge to be gained for the Venezuelan opposition.
The right wing in office for the last two years under Chirac (who shares with Chavez some audacity and the taste of ruling unencumbered by legal restrictions) went to the local elections divided. The first round balloting was favorable to the opposing left. But in the week in between the two rounds, the right wing adversaries could not overcome what had been a very divisive and bitter campaign agaisnt each other. The result of the second round were WORSE than the first round and Chirac's friends lost ALL but one of the French regions!!! A map will give you a dramatic summary of the results.
Now, people like AD or Copei that think they can do campaign as usual and trash Primero Justicia, Causa R, Proyecto Venezuela, or whoever they do not like might be well advised that even if they kiss and make up before August 1, the electors might be disgusted enough not to follow. And Chavez could end up not only keeping what he already has, but might even add a couple to it.
Regional Elections have a way to become National Elections, a way that might be difficult to control. If that is true in France, where democracy has been well tested since 1870, imagine how much truer this might be in Venezuela.