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__Kratos__

'Chavez factor' in play as Peru votes

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__Kratos__

When Peruvians elect a new president Sunday, they won't just be deciding their own fate for the next five years. Their choice could have far-reaching consequences for Latin America and its leftward surge of recent years.

It will also test the prestige of a highly visible noncandidate – Hugo Chavez.

The Venezuelan president's intervention has been a highlight of the race between former President Alan Garcia, a center-leftist who favors free markets, and Ollanta Humala, an antiestablishment nationalist tapping into discontent among the poor. Garcia's lead over Chavez-backed Humala, while shrinking in some polls, remains strong.

The runoff vote in South America's third largest country comes amid a contest for ideological pre-eminence on the continent – between moderate-left, market-friendly governments such as those in Brazil and Chile, and anti-American, populist ones with authoritarian tendencies such as Venezuela's and Bolivia's.

The leftist trend largely grew out of disenchantment with the capitalist "neoliberal" doctrine that failed to reduce poverty in the region, but lately it has shown signs of slowing. Colombia's re-election a week ago of Alvaro Uribe was a big win for conservatism, while Mexico's leftist Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador, formerly the favorite in next month's presidential vote, is now running neck-and-neck with a conservative.

Humala opposes U.S.-backed eradication of coca leaf, the raw material for Peru's thriving cocaine industry. Garcia supports eliminating the crop. Humala is against establishing a U.S.-Peruvian free trade deal, and has pledged to increase taxes on foreign mining companies and spend the money on the poor. Garcia supports the trade pact and, although critical of the Iraq war, says Peru needs good relations with Washington.

"In my memory, this is the Peruvian election that has the most importance internationally," said Diego Garcia Sayan, a former foreign minister of Peru and a sitting magistrate on the Costa Rica-based Inter-American Court of Human Rights.

Humala has pledged heavy state intervention in Peru's free-market economy, which has averaged 5.5 percent annual growth in the past four years but is viewed by most Peruvians as benefiting only the rich.

Garcia, whose disastrous 1985-90 administration left Peru in economic ruin, paints himself as a reformed leftist. Now 57, he says he has learned from his mistakes and has become pro-business.

Humala, 43, a retired army lieutenant colonel, aligned himself for a time with Chavez, but it clearly backfired. Chavez thrust himself into the race by vociferously endorsing Humala and trading insults with Garcia, calling him "a thief for real, a demagogue, a liar."

Finally Humala sought to distance himself by endorsing his spokesman's judgment that Chavez "can go to hell." But by then Garcia had adroitly turned the race into a referendum on the Chavez factor, depicting Humala as an aspiring authoritarian who would fall into lockstep with the Venezuelan's populist economics and Cuba-friendly anti-Americanism.

"The choice is between Hugo Chavez and Peru," Garcia said last week.

In the first round of voting April 9, Garcia made the runoff by a paper-thin margin. But since he began labeling Humala a Chavez pawn, he has held a lead of at least 10 percentage points in most surveys.

"Peruvians are disgusted that a foreign president is intervening so shamelessly in Peru's internal affairs," said Fernando Rospigliosi, a former interior minister.

At a rally last week, Humala tried to blame the whole affair on Garcia, accusing him of provoking Chavez and serving as an American puppet.

"They need a servile president who can be the roadblock against Latin America's projects of integration," he said, to thunderous applause from tens of thousands of supporters in a Lima shantytown.

Experts on Latin America say Peru's election is key to Chavez's goal of spreading his influence in South America with oil money and populism. He already has become a mentor and financial benefactor to Evo Morales, the Indian leader elected president of Peru's neighbor, Bolivia, in December.

"Certainly an Humala victory would reinforce this dynamic of relationships between Venezuela, Bolivia and, then, Peru, and also reinforce a deep wave of antipathy toward the neoliberal economic model," said David Scott Palmer, a Boston University professor of Latin American studies and an authority on Peruvian politics.

Peruvian political analyst Gustavo Gorriti sees Garcia – eloquent, charismatic and strong-willed – as the leader most likely to resist Chavez and inspire other Latin American politicians to do likewise.

"He is the only one in the Andean area who could confront Chavez effectively and successfully," Gorriti said. "His victory would have a very favorable repercussion on the political balance in South America."

Analysts agree that nightmarish memories of Garcia's first administration, with its raging inflation, political violence and long lines for food, will give many Peruvians pause before voting for him.

"A lot of people are going to hold their noses and vote for Garcia, or not vote at all," Palmer said.

Humala has spooked middle-class Peruvians with his attacks on the established parties as corrupt and unresponsive to the needs of the poor, and his vow to write a new constitution stripping them of power.

Garcia has tapped into those fears, saying his role models are socialist presidents such as Brazil's Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva and Chile's Michelle Bachelet who "guarantee democracy, respect for institutions and tolerance."

Source

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Chavez loves to yell at other countries for meddling in other countries then their own, then he turns around and does the same bloody thing. :rolleyes:

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What?

Well, Chavez would have my vote. I would like to see gas at 12 cents a gallon here. :tu:

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__Kratos__

Well, Chavez would have my vote. I would like to see gas at 12 cents a gallon here. :tu:

Indeed. But it is just another politcal ploy to "buy" the people. They do the same thing in Saudi Arabi. Also to achieve that insanely low price he is taxing the hell out of oil companies in his country, not to mention they are oil rich so they can do it. He was even talking yesterday to make crude oil at a minimum of 50 dollars, because the market has enough oil, he says. Another words, he's using his power now to try and win votes for the future with a couple tools rather then trying to make it all work. His own country is irked at him for wasting their money on trying to give cheap oil to other countries, including the US.

Not to mention he's a tad bit paranoid. He is listening to Washington though, without talking about it at all in terms he is agreeing with the US. Why just yesterday he beefed up his border with Columbia to prevent guerilla groups and such to be flowing into his country, which in the past he has ignored. Why did he do that? To send a clear message to Washington to say he's fighting against them, so can you please dang well lift the arms sanctions on me?!

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Mr Slayer

They do the same thing in Saudi Arabi.

The US or Venezuela?

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__Kratos__

The US or Venezuela?

I was talking about countries that give citizens cheap gas to buy poltical points and to boost their ideals. So I was saying Venezuela and Saudi Arabi were both using cheap gas to buy their people off.

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__Kratos__

Update: Peru votes after fierce campaign

Peruvians are going to the polls in a run-off presidential election.

Results are expected to be very close. Polls suggest ex-President Alan Garcia will win a narrow majority over nationalist candidate Ollanta Humala.

Because of this, campaigning has been especially fierce - few in Peru can remember a dirtier, more aggressive election campaign.

Mr Humala received 30.7% of the vote in the first round - not enough for an outright win. Mr Garcia polled 24%.

The Chavez factor

For weeks, the two men vying to be president have been trading insults and allegations.

Tough choice for voters

Mr Garcia has tried to portray Mr Humala as a dangerous threat to democracy and peace.

He has frequently referred to the former army officer's involvement in an armed uprising, and has criticised his lack of political experience and his close ties to Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez.

Mr Garcia may have gained some ground after international observers said Mr Chavez had been meddling in Peru's elections.

But Mr Chavez's support for Mr Humala has been a major part of the nationalist candidate's campaign.

'Lesser evil'

For his part, Mr Humala has kept reminding Peruvians of the mistakes of Mr Garcia's presidency, which was marked by rebel attacks and rampant inflation.

The nationalist leader has promised to break with the past.

His pledge to give the state more control over Peru's vast natural resources has won him support among the poor.

And he has overseen an effective advertising campaign, even if many analysts regard his promises as rather naive and too nationalistic.

In their desperation to gain an advantage, Peru's two candidates have left a climate of distrust and confusion in a country where voting is compulsory.

Many Peruvians say they will not vote for either man and plan to destroy their ballot papers.

Even more say neither candidate appeals and they will have to decide which of the two men is the lesser of two evils.

------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

*crosses fingers for Mr. Garcia*

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What?

The U.S. has been trying to dicredit Chavez for some time now.Even that old 'his foot in his mouth as usuall' Pat Robertson wants in the picture calling for the assassination of Chavez. Any Nation that gets out from under the IMF'S heel is better off. And If we could get gas for 12 cents a gallon like his people are getting,super!! Hopefully the U.S. will stay out of the election. Don't hold your breath though. We want our own brand of 'democracy' to prevail. No matter how it's done. What are those people called,the Hammas? Democratic elections and the U.S. is still not happy. The people spoke. Lets go Chavez :)

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Mekorig

Kratos, keep getting you info from conservative sources and your understanding of the world will dismish. While Humala its an idiotic natinalist form a family of idiots, Garcia its not too much behind. He was a president of Peru already, and did a very bad work. Even now, after tha defeat of the right wing candidate in the first try, these forces now back up Garcia against Humala. Garcia and his news allies represent the tipical oligarchic form the cities in Peru. Humala use (yep, i say use, because that is the word) the humnhappy masses of poor people. And whit Chavez try togain Humala has an ally, Humala had another ideas. He even send Chavez to hell the other past day.

Soo, the elctions in Peru are just the "less evil" election. Adn by the way, while you complain about the usa bashers and everything, using conservative sources that only bash Chavez whitout rasoning would not reinforce your position.

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__Kratos__

The U.S. has been trying to dicredit Chavez for some time now.Even that old 'his foot in his mouth as usuall' Pat Robertson wants in the picture calling for the assassination of Chavez. Any Nation that gets out from under the IMF'S heel is better off. And If we could get gas for 12 cents a gallon like his people are getting,super!! Hopefully the U.S. will stay out of the election. Don't hold your breath though. We want our own brand of 'democracy' to prevail. No matter how it's done. What are those people called,the Hammas? Democratic elections and the U.S. is still not happy. The people spoke. Lets go Chavez :)

:blink: Chavez isn't running he just want his guy to win in Peru because he's a left winger, while the US want someone else to win.

Kratos, keep getting you info from conservative sources

Actually, I found it first on yahoo but forgot about it till I hit that right side site. ;)

Yahoo Link for first story

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Mekorig

a little correction: Garcia is a center left guy, how, by a twist of destiny, is now backed by the most of the Peru´s right wing. Humala its just and idiotic nationalistic and lightly facist moron. And the USA only want to win the candidates that answer better their "advices", not the better for that nation.

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__Kratos__

a little correction: Garcia is a center left guy, how, by a twist of destiny, is now backed by the most of the Peru´s right wing. Humala its just and idiotic nationalistic and lightly facist moron. And the USA only want to win the candidates that answer better their "advices", not the better for that nation.

Thanks, I don't really understand a whole lot about South American politics so the more info the more I'll take in. Not a whole lot of SA sites in English. I normally hit yahoo, bbc and another site I can't remember but it's in my news favorites.

Here's an update: Moderate leads Peru presidential election

Quote:

LIMA, Peru - A sampling of ballots showed moderate leftist Alan Garcia leading fiery nationalist Ollanta Humala Sunday in a presidential runoff deciding whether Peru tilts into Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez's orbit or maintains free-market policies.

The Apoyo polling firm said that a statistical projection based on a sampling of ballots nationwide gave Garcia 52.9 percent of the vote compared to 47.1 percent for Humala. The sampling had a margin of error of about 1 percentage point, the firm said.

Two exit polls issued when voting ended also gave Garcia the lead, though pollsters cautioned that some people might be hesitant to reveal they had voted for Humala because of heavy criticism of him in the media.

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Still a bit to go yet.

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Mekorig

You are welcome. At least you try to know aobut thee rest of thr world. Sadly, i have seen in my years in internet, that a big part of the USA citizens had little or non knoledge of the world outside their country.

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dani10

UPDATEEEE!!

LIMA, Peru (CNN) -- Former Peruvian President Alan Garcia appeared to be staging a political comeback Sunday as exit polls and unofficial counts showed he was leading a runoff presidential election.

With slightly more than 77 percent of the ballots counted, Garcia led with 55.5 percent of the vote to 44.5 percent for Ollanta Humala. Election officials said results should be available after by 9 p.m. local time (2 a.m. GMT).

If the results hold up, it would make official a political comeback for Garcia after his previous administration ended in economic ruin, rebel violence and accusations of rights abuses.

Peruvian citizens said they believed voting for Garcia was choosing the lesser of two evils in a race with Humala, a leftist former coup leader who campaigned for closer ties with the government of Venezuelan leader Hugo Chavez.

Garcia, a socialist, led Peru from 1985 to 1990. The country was hit hard by inflation that topped 7,500 percent a year during his term, and he went into self-imposed exile after leaving office.

Although Garcia was initially in the lead, electoral officials reminded citizens a margin of error often means exit poll results were not completely accurate.

Despite warnings that exit polls are sometimes inaccurate, many Garcia supporters were seen celebrating in the streets of Lima.

Interior Minister Romulo Pizarro reported calm throughout the country and said the election has gone well, despite earlier minor incidents.

Peruvian President Alejandro Toledo has asked both candidates to accept and respect the results.

The bitterly fought election has included street clashes and virulent exchanges of slurs, including from President Chavez, who exacerbated the ill will by vigorously endorsing Humala and calling Garcia a crook, AP reports.

At one point, Garcia was hit in the face by an egg, leaving a nasty bruise. The attack, in the highland city of Cuzco, a stronghold for Humala, was followed hours later by a shootout involving supporters of the two rivals.

In the final days of campaigning, election observers from the Organization of American States urged the two campaigns to tone down the rhetoric and avoid violence.

Humala, a retired military man like Chavez, has spooked upper- and middle-class Peruvians by attacking the established parties as corrupt and unresponsive to the needs of the poor. He vows to write a new constitution stripping them of power.

Garcia, 57, has adroitly turned the race into a referendum on the Chavez factor, depicting Humala as an aspiring despot who would fall into lockstep with the Venezuelan's populist economics and Cuba-friendly anti-Americanism.

He has labeled Chavez, who is rolling in petrodollars from record-high oil prices, as "a midget dictator with a big wallet." Chavez in turn has called Garcia "a genuine thief, a demagogue, a liar."

source from CNN : http://www.cnn.com/2006/WORLD/americas/06/...elex/index.html

Oh god, I don't know which one of them is the WORST one. To start with, why are my people so DUMB? Choosing in one hand a guy who scr**ed us over 20 years ago along with a guy who is friends with Chavez? Wht were they thinking? THIS is one of the reasons Peru is stilla t hird world country, most of its people are sooo dumb :no: Sometimes I'm ashamed of my own country, how sad is that. They could have chosen Lourdes Flores, an intelligent well-spoken woman that didn't had a communist tendency like Humala nor had made our economy go to hell 20 years ago. But no, they had to choose the two worst ones.

Humala, a retired military man like Chavez, has spooked upper- and middle-class Peruvians by attacking the established parties as corrupt and unresponsive to the needs of the poor. He vows to write a new constitution stripping them of power.

Yeah sure! Keep dreaming, shortie! Like that's gonna happen! Now I know why all of my friends and family(wow, deja vu!) wanted to leave Peru lol this guy is NUTS.

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dani10

I forgot to add, they don't have it as a winner in CNN yet, but in peruvians newspapers they already have the news that Alan Garcia won.

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__Kratos__

Update: Peruvians elect Garcia president

Quote:

With most of the votes counted in the second round of Peru's election, it has become clear that ex-president Alan Garcia has won a convincing victory.

Mr Garcia polled 54.69% of ballots to 45.30% for nationalist rival Ollanta Humala, with 83.9% of votes counted.

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Congratz to Mr. Garcia. :tu:

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Mekorig

I hope he do a better job than the first one.....

And sadly,yes, it was the election of the lesser of two evils.....

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