Sunday, August 22, 2010

Correa approval

Two days ago I discussed concerns about coups occurring in Latin America.  In Ecuador, for example, 39% believed that a coup was likely in the next twelve months.  Yet we also see that an August 2010 Cedatos/Gallup poll shows Rafael Correa with a 53% approval rating, which has been steady since May.

So we have the unfortunate situation in which Rafael Correa is the most popular president Ecuador has had in some time, he has been in power for over three years after a revolving door (he was the seventh president in a decade) and the military has remained quiet, yet people think it is entirely likely he'll be overthrown anyway.

Guillermo O'Donnell has written a lot about citizenship in new (or re-emerging) democracies.  People must feel engaged and believe they are benefiting from democracy.  In the case of Ecuador, the approval rating is a crude measure, but certainly suggests people do believe that.  Yet based on a recent history of coups, they are skeptical about whether it will last.  That may not come until several presidents have served their full terms, then left office peacefully.


Tambopaxi 12:48 PM  

...Just looked up O'Donnell's "Quality of Democracy". Sigh... Wish they'd put these things on Kindle, it'd be a lot, lot cheaper to get...

Greg Weeks 1:13 PM  

Well, can't help you there. Here is a paper he wrote that touches on similar issues.

Tambopaxi 1:18 PM  

Thanks for the paper, Greg.

leftside 2:47 AM  

It should be obvious that the coup in Honduras inflated these inflated coup perceptions in Latin America. If it happened with a relative moderate in Honduras (with little protest from the US), why not against someone actually threatening the old way of doing things in Ecuador? The rich and powerful elite of any country can not be discounted anywhere they are losing influence. When I was in Quito, the hatred in certain quarters was palatable.

Justin Delacour 1:13 AM  

When I was in Quito, the hatred in certain quarters was palatable.

Just to clarify, I think the word you're looking for is "palpable." If the hatred were palatable, that would mean you could eat it.

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