Venezuelan Opposition Makes Solid Gains

To follow up on Anastasia Moloney’s WPR preview of the Venezuela elections, the NY Times is reporting that the opposition indeed made significant gains, but according to the WaPo, it apparently lost Sucre which would have signaled inroads into Venezuelan President Hugo Chávez’s core base urban poor. Chávez also managed to avoid some of the more significant symbollic defeats that had been forecasted, like the governorship that his brother was trying to inherit from their father. Still, the defeat is a substantial one for Chávez, and comes despite a good deal of pre-election government interference. How he responds to the outcome will go a long way towards determining the truth to his claim that the elections prove the strength of Venezuela’s democracy.