Chavez Re-Elected in Landslide

Venezualan president Hugo Chavez was easily re-elected.

Hugo Chavez Re-Elected Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez greets his supporters from a balcony at Miraflores Presidential Palace in Caracas, Venezuela, Sunday, Dec. 3, 2006. Chavez won re-election by a wide margin Sunday, giving the firebrand leftist six more years to redistribute Venezuela's vast oil wealth to the poor and press his campaign to counter U.S. influence in Latin America and beyond. (AP Photo/Howard Yanes) Emboldened by a resounding re-election, President Hugo Chavez pledged to shake up Venezuela with a more radical version of socialism and forge a wider front against the United States in Latin America. Opposition contender Manuel Rosales accepted defeat Sunday night, but promised to continue countering a leader whom he accuses of becoming increasingly authoritarian.

Touting his victory in a speech to thousands, Chavez said Venezuelans should expect an “expansion of the revolution” aimed at redistributing the country’s oil wealth among the poor. “Long live the revolution!” Chavez shouted from the balcony of the presidential palace. “Venezuela is demonstrating that a new and better world is possible, and we are building it.”

With 78 percent of voting stations reporting, Chavez had 61 percent of the vote, to 38 percent for Rosales.

Apparently, anti-American rantings remain a path to victory in Latin America.

It would also appear that neither public opinion polls nor dreams are an accurate predictor of Venezuelan elections.

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James Joyner
About James Joyner
James Joyner is Professor and Department Head of Security Studies at Marine Corps University's Command and Staff College and a nonresident senior fellow at the Scowcroft Center for Strategy and Security at the Atlantic Council. He's a former Army officer and Desert Storm vet. Views expressed here are his own. Follow James on Twitter @DrJJoyner.

Comments

  1. madmatt says:

    Well what exactly has the US done for the average voter in Venezuala…illegal anti drug interdicton is about the only thing that comes to mind. If we can vilify brown people for votes here in the states is it so surprising they do the same with white people down there?

  2. LJD says:

    ?????

    Move there, then send us a letter telling us how you’re doing.

  3. Tano says:

    The links you provide are not to any credible sources, either for polling or analysis. Mora y Leon is an over-the-top spinner with zero credibility.

    The dynamic in Venezuela is not all that hard to figure out. It is a country that was ruled for a long time by a deeply corrupt oligarchy. It has a relatively small middle class. And huge amounts of poor, both in the cities and in the countryside.

    Someone who can tap into the hopes and aspirations of the poor, and win their hearts, is going to be successful in a democratic system. It is a simple matter of numbers.

    Chavez was never in any danger of losing. Because of the oil revenue floating everyones boat, and the fact that he has delivered to some extent on redistributing that wealth to the poor, he continues to enjoy majority support.

  4. Trudee Wilson says:

    I just saw a commercial while watching Fox News in which RFK Jr. thanked our good friends in Venezuela and Citgo Oil for helping DC residents with heating oil. I thought I was going to be sick.