Morales Moves Ahead With His Divisive Re-Election Bid in Bolivia

Morales Moves Ahead With His Divisive Re-Election Bid in Bolivia
Bolivian President Evo Morales arrives at the Legislative Assembly accompanied by lawmakers, La Paz, Bolivia, Jan. 22, 2019 (AP photo by Juan Karita).

Bolivian President Evo Morales marked the 13th anniversary of his presidency this week as he prepares a controversial run for a fourth consecutive term in office. Bolivia’s top electoral court has upheld his right to run in October, even though Morales is term-limited by the constitution and his attempt to amend the constitution was rejected in a 2016 referendum. In an email interview with WPR, Martín Mendoza-Botelho, a professor of political science, philosophy and geography at Eastern Connecticut State University, discusses the implications of Morales’ attempt to cling to power and explains why he is still favored to win despite the unpopularity of his re-election bid.

World Politics Review: On what grounds did Bolivia’s Supreme Electoral Court rule in Morales’ favor, and what does that decision say about the independence of Bolivia’s judiciary?

Martín Mendoza-Botelho: The decision of Bolivia’s Supreme Electoral Court simply reinforces a more controversial and clearly anti-constitutional verdict delivered by the Plurinational Constitutional Tribunal in November 2017 that allowed Morales to run for a fourth term. The main argument of the Constitutional Tribunal was that not allowing Morales to participate in another election denied him a fundamental human right. Both decisions contravene the results of a national referendum carried out in February 2016, in which 51.3 percent of the Bolivian electorate rejected a potential fourth term for Morales.

Keep reading for free!

Get instant access to the rest of this article by submitting your email address below. You'll also get access to three articles of your choice each month and our free newsletter:

Or, Subscribe now to get full access.

Already a subscriber? Log in here .

What you’ll get with an All-Access subscription to World Politics Review:

A WPR subscription is like no other resource — it’s like having a personal curator and expert analyst of global affairs news. Subscribe now, and you’ll get:

  • Immediate and instant access to the full searchable library of tens of thousands of articles.
  • Daily articles with original analysis, written by leading topic experts, delivered to you every weekday.
  • Regular in-depth articles with deep dives into important issues and countries.
  • The Daily Review email, with our take on the day’s most important news, the latest WPR analysis, what’s on our radar, and more.
  • The Weekly Review email, with quick summaries of the week’s most important coverage, and what’s to come.
  • Completely ad-free reading.

And all of this is available to you when you subscribe today.