Tuesday, September 28, 2004

The fall out of a CNE resignation.

As it is often the case, a big shake down brings the best and worse in people. Perfect time to see what are people really up to.

At noon, of course, all cameras were on Sobella Mejias, as a likely one to step down. But this is not going to happen any time soon. Her first TV appearance was in Globovision at noon and being at home for lunch I was able to hear her saying that "Los espacios no se ceden" ([political] spaces cannot be given up). She will stay, and in addition criticized Rodriguez performance late last week. Confirming to us that it was a solo performance and that Mejias and Zamora are/were completely out of the loop (one would think, in a normal country, that if a public official threatens to sue half of the country his colleagues at least have been warned). Translation of her words: the "space" refers to the fact that for as insignificant a toe hold one has it must be kept. Maybe. But we also should remember that Mejias is an AD supporter and AD has been rumored for too long that it is dealing in the shadows to keep political "space". More than ever Mejias looks like the AD agent to make sure AD keeps a few townhalls. Nothing that would be new for readers of this blog. And as a good Adeca, well, a pay check is a pay check.

This issue dealt with, the cameras focused on would substitute Zamora. Normally it should be the first under script, Miriam Kornblith. When the CNE was appointed by the High Court (beware! Not elected by the National Assembly as it should have been) each of the five rectors was accompanied with two substitutes. Normally any absence by the rector, or resignation, would mean that the first substitute steps in automatically. Unfortunately for Ms. Kornblith, chavismo loathes her. She is cool, composed, rational, totally unemotional and most of the time totally right and well informed. She would not have the discretion of Zamora.

Well, that apparently will not be a problem for chavismo. Flouting the laws written by themselves, the main lawyer of the CNE has just announced that anyone could be named to replace Zamora. First question? Why have substitutes if anyway someone else will be named? Translation: We chavistas are going to solve the problem of 3 to 2. We are going to make it a 4 to 1, presto!

Now, inasmuch as I like Ms. Kornblith who is probably one of the 5 top people in Venezuela as far as being able to organize elections, if she were to be named, which I doubt very much, it would not change anything except for more interesting news watching. The CNE is already all set up to favor chavismo, blatantly now, and whoever replaces Zamora is going to be a simple "potiche", to use the French word for wallflower.

Of course, I could not forget to mention the pro Chavez opinion. It writes itself in the annals of conspiracy theories, the poor defenseless government that needs everything to defend itself from the naughty cheating opposition. The Interior Minister, Jesse Chacon of 1992 bloody fame, declared , as translated by El Universal,
"We know that Ezequiel Zamora is a chessman of (opposition leader) Enrique Mendoza and the best choice to avoid the regional elections is to torpedo the CNE."
Adequately echoed by representative Lara, claiming once again that the opposition tries to delay elections when we all know that if it had been for us the Recall Election would have been held in August 2003!

And to conclude. The list of people that Rodriguez will have to have arrested is growing fast. Sumate director Plaz has declared that Rodriguez is not qualified to discuss the Hausman-Rigobon report. There is one thing that really is lucky for some chavistas: ridicule does not kill. Rodriguez would surely be dead by now. And Chacon and Lara too, now that I think of it.

PS: as I finish this up, Carolina Jaimes was talking on Globovision. She is the third in line after Kornblith. She has stated that she will refuse to go above Miriam Kornblith. At last! Some body with class! Translation: if it is not Ms. Kornblith then it will not be her and someone else will be against the legal set up. I suggest my chavista readers to prepare some nice explanations for when Kornblith is snuffed out of the race and we get a 4 to 1 CNE. And please, try to do so with a straight face.

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