Presidential Campaign Starts in Venezuela

Via the BBC:  Venezuela campaign starts to elect Chavez’s successor.

And, not surprisingly, acting president Nicolas Maduro is starting down the Chavez road as the basis of his campaign:

Mr Maduro, who was chosen by Mr Chavez as his successor before the former president travelled to Cuba for cancer surgery in December, will start his campaign in Barinas, Mr Chavez’s home state.

He will then follow the route Mr Chavez travelled during the last presidential campaign six months ago, hoping that he too, will end it in the presidential palace.

Maduro leads in the polls and is a lock for election.

FILED UNDER: Latin America, Quick Takes, World Politics
Steven L. Taylor
About Steven L. Taylor
Steven L. Taylor is a Professor of Political Science and a College of Arts and Sciences Dean. His main areas of expertise include parties, elections, and the institutional design of democracies. His most recent book is the co-authored A Different Democracy: American Government in a 31-Country Perspective. He earned his Ph.D. from the University of Texas and his BA from the University of California, Irvine. He has been blogging since 2003 (originally at the now defunct Poliblog). Follow Steven on Twitter


  1. Ben Wolf says:

    Maduro is a superior choice to the opposition candidate, Rudonski. He’s certainly more likely to put the welfare of Venezuelans ahead of international corporate profits.

  2. Andre Kenji says:

    Maduro has no political or practical experience, and Venezuela´s problem are not related to international corporate profits, but to the fact that Venezula is too dependent from oil, and Chavez made this dependency even worse. Venezuela imports gasoline, it´s insane.

  3. Ben Wolf says:

    @Andre Kenji: Chavez improved his peoples’ standard of living. Unemployment has fallen by half, infant mortality by almost as much.
    extreme poverty has decline from 23% to 8%. Maduro has pledged to continue the policies responsible for that trend while his challenger offers the same neo-liberal claptrap which inevitably results in declining quality of life for the masses and vast wealth for the few.

  4. Andre Kenji says:

    @Ben Wolf:

    Chavez improved his peoples’ standard of living.

    Dude, I live in South America. The difference of standards of living in most countries in the Continent is huge. Most countries managed to sharply reduce poverty because there was a commodity boom. Besides that, in 1998, when Chavez went to the Presidency the price of the barrel of oil was 16 dollars(In today´s dollars). Today is almost 100 dollars. Then, it´s easy to reduce poverty. Chavez managed to increase social spending by increasing production of oil(A danger to future reserves) and the Venezuelan economy is much more dependent from oil than ever before.

    Besides that, Caracas is one of the most violent cities in the Western Hemisphere, there is rampant inflation and it´s hard to find basic things, like milk. Hardly a paradise. Besides that, Maduro is not Chávez and Capriles is not a old style oligarch.