I knew that the regime would forge results, would commit electoral fraud, but what happened tonight is grotesque.
Venezuela has to be the ONLY COUNTRY IN THE WORLD where food scarcity, severe lack of health care, near hyperinflation levels, major street violence, living under curfew, no hope in hell for whatsoever, and the government GAINS votes. No kidding, researchers from the entire world should flock to Venezuela in the next days to study that miracle of politics. Books will be written about on how to win elections by screwing up people.
This is enough to claim electoral fraud.
Since September 14 I did write only 3 posts about today’s elections, in a rather diffident mood I would say. I was careful not to bring hopes into anyone, but also articulating a case that not taking part in these elections would be worse than boycotting them. Thus I am proven right. More right than I thought actually since the introductory paragraph of the last post explains tonight perfectly. The regime has simply decided to act nakedly as a dictatorship, even if many countries warned the regime that they knew it would commit fraud.
The regime did not even pretend, like, say, imagine, with a fifty/fifty result. No, it gave only 5 out of 23 for the opposition, confirming that we are in a new neo-communist type of electoral system, where votes for the opposition are in significant percentages, but the result is nearly 100% in favor of the regime (see the 100% for the illegal constituent assembly of July, or the scandalous 80% today).
Even if we make the case for opposition errors like not fielding their best candidates (too many AD, Ismael Garcia in Aragua, idiotic division in Amazonas) to explain part of the failing, the results of today have glaring inconsistencies. To begin with, the landslide of 2015 is reverted although no reasonable explanation can be advanced. True, there was disruptive protests this year that were not vocally followed in popular class neighborhoods (for a variety of reasons more than from lack of support). But material dissatisfaction is not only here, but it is worse, much worse than in 2015. One could buy that the regime did recover somewhat courtesy of excessive protest. But flip the thing over, and some more? Give me a break.
Even the results are funny where the opposition won. Margarita with only 51%? Or lost in say Miranda or Carabobo. Besides Tachira where Vielma Mora was beyond rescue, the other 4 wins are all around 2% whereas the chavista victories vary more. One even wonders if the opposition victory of Zulia was allowed because the regime wanted to get rid of Arias Cardenas. Same thing for the opposition win in Anzoategui against Aristobulo Isturiz, seen with suspicion by too many radicals inside the regime as one guy that could sit down and negotiate with the opposition. A nice way to purge Chavez holdovers in favor of Maduro/Cabello faithful.
But let’s not waste time discussing results that are meaningless, that will not be recognized by the opposition (I hope) nor by the foreign countries. The point here is where the opposition goes from here.
It accepts the results and thus you can forget about any future election. The beast will have been tamed and the regime will not even need to commit fraud again: the opposition will never be able to mount a significant electoral challenge. Worse, foreign countries will see that as a weakness of the opposition, as a “return” to democracy” and thus will drop their pressure on the regime.
It refuses the results and has the guts to deal with the consequences of that.
What will it be?