Socialist victory in Venezuelan municipal elections

The December 8th municipal elections in Venezuela gave yet another victory to the Bolivarian revolution, with the Socialist United Party (PSUV) and its allies in the Great Patriotic Pole receiving 5.1 million votes (49.24% of the total) against 4.4 million votes for the opposition (42.72%). Including votes for Bolivarian candidates outside of the main GPP alliance, the total for the revolution adds up to over 54%.

maduroresultadosThe turnout was 58.92%, much higher than in most European countries for similar elections.

The opposition had presented these elections as a plebiscite on Maduro's presidency. They promised to win the overall vote and get 100 mayors elected. If that was the case, then the result is clear: not only did they lose the vote, but the advantage of the Bolivarian revolution over the opposition significantly increased, from only 1.49 % in the April 14 presidential election to 6.52 %. As for the number of mayors, with most results already in, the PSUV and allies elected 234 against the opposition's 67.

The Caracas Libertador municipality in the capital was won by PSUV candidate Jorge Rodríguez with 474.227 votes (54,55%), winning even in 4 parishes which had voted for the opposition in April.

The Caracas Metropolitan race resulted in a very close win for the opposition, with incumbent Antonio Ledezma winning with 50,81% of the vote, a reduced margin from his previous win with 52.4% in 2008.

The opposition won in important state capitals such as Valencia and Barquisimeto (which previously had Bolivarian mayors) as well as mantaining Barinas, Maracaibo, Mérida y San Cristobal. The PSUV won solid victories in the state capitals of Apure, Aragua, Vargas, Anzoategui, Cojedes, Delta Amacuro, Portuguesa, Trujillo and even in the state capital of Miranda which is ruled by opposition leader Capriles. Significantly it defeated the oppositon in Heres, the capital of the industrial state of Bolivar. The defeat of the PSUV in Valencia, Carabobo, can be explained by the fact that the party had expelled the previous mayor on corruption charges. However, the PSUV won in the state of Carabobo as a whole, where the opposition had a lead of 108,000 votes in the April presidential elections and now lost by 59,000.

In celebrating the election results, president Maduro pledged to intensify the offensive against the "economic war", the campaign of hoarding, speculation and sabotage of the economy launched by the "parasitic bourgeoisie! and to take harsh measures against corruption.

This was the 19th democratic election contest in the 15 years since Hugo Chávez first came to power in 1998.

The Hands Off Venezuela campaign would like to congratulate the Bolivarian people on yet another vitcory and calls on the solidarity movement to remain vigilant for, as PSUV vicepresident Diosdado Cabello explained on election night “the opposition will never cease to conspire”.



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