Aragua State primary: A great victory for democracy

July 29, 2008

One should not minimize the importance of the primary that took place on Sunday to select the opposition candidate for the upcoming Gubernatorial race in Aragua State: It took place, it was festive, attendance was quite adequate and it provided a democratically-elected candidate by the direct participation of the people.

Isn’t democracy sweet?

It clearly wasn’t easy, it required agreements, some money, some volunteers, but the end result is impeccable, one hundred thousand voters from Aragua State (about 15% of the number that usually votes in that State) showed up to vote Henry Rosales (no relationship to Manuel) as their candidate.Even more remarkable, Rosales obtained over 81% of the preferences, way over what any poll gave me. You can question the polls, but you can not question yesterday’s vote.

It was a victory for Podemos, not so much because their candidate won, but because they executed it, sat the candidates in a room and called on Sumate to help organize it.It was also a victory for Sumate, as they clearly worked for democracy’s sake, as they had no partiality in this race.

But hopefully, it will set a path for future selections of candidates, less bickering, more transparency and more participation.

It will also be interesting to see if the victory allows Rosales to gain additional support across the State, proving the beneficial effect of a clean primary  on the winners. Moreover, you can be sure none of the losers will even dare suggest that they will run.

It’s very simple once you try it

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