Surprise at the polls | News

In Guatemala and Ecuador the polls had surprises. In both cases, the surprise was given by outsiders with known surnames. The son of a hero of the troubled Guatemalan democracy, and the son of a banana industry magnate who failed five times trying to become president of Ecuador.

The two outsiders with prosapia faced two women who express the main left in their respective countries. Both believed they had an assured victory, but they were crossed by outsiders who, at the last minute, drastically changed the electoral board. Sandra Torres gave the first sign of excessive ambition for power when she divorced her husband, former President Alvaro Colom, in 2011, because that relationship of hers prevented her from running for president at that time.

Now the former Guatemalan first lady Sandra Torres was seeking for the third time what she did not achieve in 2015, when she was defeated by Jimmy Morales, and in 2019, when she was defeated by Alejandro Giammattei. This time the path seemed clear, but in the first round, Bernardo Arévalo appeared out of nowhere, a sociologist with a diplomatic career who, a few years ago, founded the Seed Movement to fight against the corruption and arbitrariness that eat away at the Guatemalan state.

He was unknown, despite the fact that his father is a hero of democracy in Guatemala. Juan José Arevalo was the first democratic president of that Central American country and his reformist policy tried to correct brutal social inequalities, a path followed by his successor, Jacobo Árbenz, who was overthrown by a coup that included US bombings and was organized by the CIA and promoted by the banana multinational United Fruit.

The president-elect of Guatemala was born in Uruguay, the country where his father had gone into exile after the bloody coup that brought a pathetic and dark character to power: Colonel Castillo Armas. Despite being the son of a former president, Bernardo Arévalo launched into the electoral race being practically unknown to Guatemalans. However, he was soon perceived as the only candidate truly determined to wage a full frontal fight against entrenched corruption in the state and in Guatemala’s dire ruling class.

Elections in Ecuador

Sandra Torres was not as clear and credible as Bernardo Arévalo in explaining the moral decadence and arbitrariness that characterizes the traditional leadership and that President Giammattei took to its maximum expression. Worse still: when the polls showed that whoever had entered the ballotage with her had a great chance of prevailing, Sandra Torres had no political or ethical pruritus and allied herself with the decadent and corrupt establishment, showing that she was capable of anything to avoid being defeated by third time. She went even further by accusing her opponent of being an ultra-leftist. In this way, he became a pathetic echo of the accusation of “communist” that United Fruit leveled against his father and against Jacobo Arbenz, to justify the conspiracies and the coup d’état that destabilized all of Central America and the Caribbean, initiating in the region the period of political and social calamities that continues to the present day.

The leadership entrenched in power tried, first, to prevent his candidacy by invalidating it from the Electoral Court. When these plots failed, he banded together for the leftist candidate to defeat him. But nothing could stop Bernardo Arévalo from winning the presidency. His surprising and also surprising victory sounds like revenge in history for the injustices and suffering suffered by his father and by Árbenz in the middle of the last century.

Elections in Ecuador

Possibly, in Ecuador the same thing will end up happening. In the first round, Luisa González, the candidate of Rafael Correa and his party, Revolución Ciudadana, prevailed. However, the one who was best positioned was the candidate who, surprisingly, took off from the penultimate position in all the polls and came second, getting the ticket to the ballotage. And in that vote, it is possible that the same thing happens to correísmo as in the previous presidential election.

In the 2021 elections, the candidate appointed by Rafael Correa comfortably won the first round, with almost the same percentage of votes that Luisa González now obtained. But in the ballotage, Andrés Arauz was defeated by the conservative Guillermo Lasso, who had been in second place almost fourteen points behind.

Elections in Ecuador

On this occasion, the one who surprisingly entered the second round obtained five percentage points more than what Lasso obtained two years ago. Therefore, Daniel Novoa’s chances of prevailing in the final vote could be greater than those of the current president in the 2021 elections.
Why did Daniel Novoa manage to advance to the second round, widely beating Christian Zurita (who occupied the candidacy that became vacant due to the murder of Fernando Villavicencio) and the demagogue Jan Topic and his promise to apply the method of the Salvadoran Nayib Bukele to end with crime in Ecuador? Because that young businessman who did not appear with any chance in any survey, was the one who stood out in the debate between the candidates.

At only 35 years old, the candidate of the National Democratic Action (ADN) party showed intelligence and his message reached, above all, a youth that expects nothing from the traditional leadership and is looking for new leaders to create economic opportunities. Like Kirchnerism in Argentina, Correismo has the highest number of voters in Ecuador, although it also has the lowest ceiling.

Elections in Ecuador

Therefore, the “non-correista” candidate who entered the ballotage can, like Lasso in 2021, unite the votes that in the first round were distributed among all the applicants who confront the former president. Like John Kennedy in the historic televised debate in which he overwhelmed Richard Nixon, Noboa displayed his ability and professional preparation, turning the debate between candidates into his launching pad.

Banana tycoon Alvaro Noboa, a businessman with a political vocation and conservative affiliation, was a presidential candidate five times, losing each time. His son is running for the first time, with the proposal to develop the economy from innovative ideas and standing above “the crack” that divides society between correístas and anti-correístas. But it is precisely that “crack” that could lead him to the main office of the Carondelet Palace.

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