Monday, November 07, 2005

Bring 'em on 

In a setback for the Venezuelan opposition the European Union today signed an accord with the Venezuelan electoral council (C.N.E.) to observe the upcoming legislative elections on December 4th.

The opposition had tried desperately to prevent the European Union from sending observers. Back in May opposition lawyer Tulio Alvarez went to Europe to try to stop them from sending observers. Just last week opposition NGO SUMATE spent some of the money they get from the U.S. government making a tour of Europe to try to convince the members of the E.U. that there is no democracy in Venezuela.

The reason for not wanting observers is that the opposition knows it almost certainly will lose the elections. However, they just can't stomach Chavez in power and a legistlature in which his part has most of the seats. So their strategy is to try to delegitimize the government by saying the elections are fraudulent and don't mean anything. I suppose if you know you can't win a vote the next best thing is just to say the vote is rigged. With the presence of E.U. observers that now becomes much harder.

Jean Charles Fieher, the head of the EU mission, said the 150 observers will be arriving this week. He also said that they will have complete freedom and authority to go whereever they need to and to observe all parts of the electoral process. I just hope this person realizes what he is in for when he finds that the elections were free of fraud and that pro-Chavez candidates really did win. He might want to talk to Jimmy Carter and Cesar Gavira about what to expect.


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