Thursday, 14 August 2008

We have reached unity: More voters than candidates!

Venezuela's local elections will take place on 27 November and we have finally come to the point when we know the definite list of candidates.

We were already surprised by the amount of people who wanted to become mayors and governors. We were annoyed by the lack of unity within the opposition and pleased by the same thing happening within Chavismo.

There were 11513 initial postulations for 355 mayors (who are the ones on top of municipalities) and 930 for 23+1 governors (actually we have 23 states plus 1 Capital District). So each municipality had on average 32.43 possible candidates and each state had an average of 38.75 candidates.

Let's visualize this (we round it up or down, the figures used are based on randomly selected open source pictures, any similarity to real life or people is purely coincidental):


Each state has on average this amount of candidates for the post of governor:

The military Hugo Chávez had declared a couple of months ago he expected the amount of electors to be over 3 million more than in 2007 but it seems this became too much even for the so government-friendly National Electoral Council of Venezuela: there are "only" 16699576 voters. There is a big variance.

After the initial cleaning up, only a fraction of the postulates were accepted. Carabobo has now 9 accepted candidates (from 20 initial applications).

This time Venezuelans abroad (about 50000 registered voters, many more could have registered) won't count as they do not vote for regional elections. Their votes and the vote of 10% of all the voters were not even counted for December's referendum, even if the National Electoral Council had to provide the total counting two weeks after the voting day.

How is natural selection going to turn out here? Stay tuned.


  1. My son tried to register, he is in the US, but without a cedula, he could not. They will not renew his cedula or pasaporte. He was told to his face, it is because he 'has blue eyes' and is probably opposition. Which he is...

  2. Hi, JM.
    I am sorry for that.
    I am a EU and Venezuelan national.
    As far as I understand it (and I have dealt quite some with Venezuelan embassies in Europe), cédulas cannot be obtained outside Venezuela. A Lebanese Maronite woman I met in Venezuela told me the Venezuelan embassy in Beirut did distribute cédulas to Muslims who had already a Venezuelan passport or birth certificate. That would have been illegal, but I cannot confirm that, it is what she said.

    In 1998 very unfortunately I could not vote. I was in Germany, I had a valid Venezuelan passport but no cédula (I had been robbed). I tried, I asked why I could not if the passport was OK and that should be sufficient proof I was a Venezuelan national, if I had a photocopy of my stolen cédula, nothing, to no avail.

    I had to go later to Venezuela to get a new cédula so that I could vote in the next elections and also I went to Venezuela exclusively for the firmazo. The current cédula is a joke of a document one can get in a couple of minutes from any of the cédulación centres.
    In the last elections I was one of the witnesses for the opposition.

    I saw several people vote with old
    cédulas voting and they were all oppos.

    It seems that a cédula is the only valid document one can use to vote.
    One also needs to have proof of being a legal resident of the country one lives in to register first time, which I assume your son has as a US citizen or resident (I assume he is US citizen as you are also one).

    I will check here if for registering first time the cédula has to be valid, but I believe not.
    For voting (once registered) the cédula can be invalid for ages.
    That was so in 1998 (thus, before Chavismo came to power) and now.

    I do not know how far he lives from the embassy or consulate but if I were him I would go again with the birth certificate and current old passport AND someone else (pretending to be his girlfriend/brother/dad/mother) who has something to do with a human rights organization or the like
    (journalist?) and ask again. If they really say that again, he should make a scandal of it.
    Perhaps a hidden recorder?

    I am brown eyed, but I have several relatives with blue or green eyes and as anti-Chavistas as it can get and they have had no problem with that with the Venezuelan voting centres. They have had problems of other kind (they signed against Chavez and have problems getting jobs or contracts with the Venezuelan government, as usual).

    Now, one of my cousins from my mother's side has a very Muslim Arab name and looks like a younger version of Omar Sharif. His grandfather on his dad's side came from Syria. My cousin is Catholic, he speaks no word of Arabic, he never went there, he is anti-Chavista as anyone, he is financially solid and yet he told me that when he went to the US embassy to ask for a tourist visa he was told he could not get it because of his Arab background. I could not believe him but he repeated it was true and he is a very serious person. One thing: it was some months after 11 of September.
    I told him he should go with witnesses and try it again.

    I would tell you to do so. Of course, it would take time and be a pain. Racism from any side cannot be tolerated. But first get the witnesses and the details about the legal procedure for registering (also double-check with a criollo who can call the embassy there)


1) Try to be constructive and creative. The main goal of this blog is not to bash but to propose ideas and, when needed, to denounce
2) Do not use offensive language
3) Bear in mind that your comments can be edited or deleted at the blogger's sole discretion
4) If your comment would link back to a site promoting hatred of ethnic groups, nations, religions or the like, don't bother commenting here.
5) Read point 4 again