Participation, CNE RECOGNIZED, 46%
Participation from other sources range from a 32% for Reuters to a 17% for Meganalisis
*the lowest electoral participation in a presidential election in 30 years, the lowest one was 56% in 2000. Note: as far as I know all previous presidential elections since 1958 have been above 56%. Venezuelan "democracy" at its worst showing.
*Falcon and Bertucci are not going to recognize the result, discovering suddenly that there was fraud.
Oh well.... Where should I start?
It was for all to see today. The lesser in lower economic class groups, the major in more still with a job areas. Let's not forget that out of the 20 million registered voters 3 million live now overseas so who is to know what is the real abstention inside Venezuela?
The CNE recognized 46% participation and this number by itself is catastrophic, less than, say, the catastrophic 32% but still quite awful. So Maduro is "elected" with the vote of only 29 % of the Venezuelan electorate even though we are a dictatorship and thus there is motivation to vote him in or out.
So what you may say? Well the scandalous conditions of the election establish without a doubt that chavismo, and now as of today madurismo is not 20% of the country. The extra 9% is strictly due to blackmail to public workers, Mision Vivienda holders , etc, etc... Blackmail. And it did not work that well.
Assuming that these numbers are correct, what we have is what polls say: madurismo hovers at a radical take no hostages 20% of a group suffering of a strong social resentment, an inextinguishable thirst for revenge and to blame their faults on others.
Personally I think that the CNE made up at least 500,000 votes to make sure that the Maduro margin was overwhelming. That is 67%. As I predicted early today, they could not resit it, they would give Maduro an above 60% victory, making up half a million votes is enough to have an "ample" victory for a president that no serious poll gave him more than 30%.
Really? Should we discuss them?
Out of a quick fast track calculation my scenario this morning was 6+3+1. We get 6+2+1. Damn good! [self patting on the back].
At the last minute the Falcon result was low enough that the CNE could not fix it. They may/may not have given him votes, but at most it would have been half a million. Say 700 for Maduro and 300 for Falcon?
Bertucci probably got what he got, the evangelical minority vote.
So if the CNE made up, say, 1 millon votes that leaves the real participation at 37%, close enough to the Reuters number. Well, well....
Venezuela presidential vote turnout was at 32.3 percent by 6pm, according to electoral board source— Reuters Venezuela (@ReutersVzla) May 21, 2018
Between 6 PM and 8 PM (illegal closing time) you cannot go from 32 to 46. Maybe 37......
The consequences for the regime
Maduro victory is a pyrrhic one. He comes worse out of it than when he entered. Chavismo knows the voting machinery is broken and that because of madurismo. The inner consequences for the PSUV are going to be dramatic, the more so if you put that together with the indictment in the US of Diosdado Cabello and this video, a leak on how Maduro was preparing yesterday his victory rally stage or something.
This is truly astounding!!!!!!! https://t.co/TDwZ5Hd7Z7— daniel duquenal (@danielduquenal) May 20, 2018
Interesting note: the regime "lost" about 2 million votes since July 2017 election of the constitutional assembly, bringing to the forefront once again the impossible result announced then (and as quickly announced as today when generally results do take sometimes until midnight, the more so if the opposition is winning).
The consequences for the opposition
The good news first: with less than 6 million votes and an electoral machinery petering badly, the recall election on the National Assembly announced by Cabello a few days ago would be a new loss for the regime because this time, a reunited opposition, will have witnesses in all the voting stations and the international community that did not want the elections of today to be held, nor the opposition to participate, will look favorably at the opposition defending the assembly. Note that a recall election would put again on play the missing 3 seats of Amazonas state and some of the chavista seats that have been deserted by their holders due to diverse appointments. The risks for the regime are too much, fraud notwithstanding.
The other good news is that the abstention party has clearly won inside the opposition. If you take the Falcon vote out of the nearly 7,7 millions of 2015 and consider that part of the Falcon vote are disenchanted chavistas then the abstention anti Maduro party is 6 million and the negotiating party is 1 million. Technically if all opposition had gone out and voted Maduro would have lost. But the regime would have made sure one way of the other to make that unity impossible, even cancelling elections at the last minute if needed. My point here is that the majority of the country is now solidly in the opposition, or at least the anti Maduro camp. And a deepening economic catastrophe will only make this the worse.
Another news that maybe good or bad is that the regime may not want to risk for the time being a referendum on a new constitution. Such a new paper will have now to be imposed by fiat, and thus not recognized legally by too many countries.
This being said it is now for the opposition to gather its broken glass and find a way, FAST, to respond to the electoral fraud committed today. That Falcon has declared that he will not recognize the result is going to help, but it will help more if the opposition as a whole finds a way to make some form of primary that will establish at the very least its inner workings. In fact, organizing outright primaries to have a candidate for December elections no matter what the regime says could be a stunt paying off handsomely if well carried.
That is more discussion than what I intended. Or necessary. The real discussion now is what the opposition will do with a victory of sorts when chavismo has a defeat of sorts. As usual in ALL Venezuelan elections since 1998, no issue is settled, only a new time extension for the regime now turned dictatorship. And more importantly, what are the foreign governments going to do against Maduro now that more than ever elections are not the way out.
The regime has one way out, besides intense repression: impose a new constitution to get rid of th National Assembly.
The opposition has one single task ahead, to find a common voice for the hard fight that is coming on us, like a train wreck.