Tuesday, January 10, 2017

Venezuela Staggers Onward

Henrique Capriles has called for a protest on January 23 across Venezuela. The intent is to push for elections. They hope for a new slew of elections based on the notion that Nicolás Maduro has abandoned his post.  Given how desperate the regime is to stay in power, this seems wildly unlikely.

Interestingly, of course now if a recall referendum were held and triumphed, then Tareck El Aissami--who has all kinds of baggage, including drug trafficking--would become president. Now, perhaps that's not functionally worse than Maduro, but it's definitely not an improvement.

As I wrote in September, there is ample evidence to show that Venezuelans value democracy and want a democratic conclusion to the crisis. What this also means, though, is the government's anti-democratic responses to opposition have not been challenged. Dialogue went nowhere. Protests come and protests go. None of them have developed into something larger. The opposition keeps trying, but is still divided.

Therefore the country seems mostly to be staggering onward toward the April 2018 presidential elections, which if held will be won by the opposition.


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