While people are still trying to show that the municipal elections were somehow a victory for the opposition, the more the results are analyzed, the worse it actually looks for the opposition. I had tried to analyze the results of the election to look at local parties which ran independent candidates and separate the votes according to the leanings of those parties. But since the CNE site is blocked outside Venezuela, it is very difficult to do. Someone was helping me locally, but then today Eugenio Martinez did an even better (more precise) job in El Universal, as he even had two additional categories, candidates supported by both sides (bizarro country) and really independent candidates with no ties to either side.
The results are shown in the table above. The first two lines are the Lucena-style results, in which you only take into account the votes for PSUV and the votes for the MUD, which makes it look like PSUV got 54.4% of the vote and the MUD 45.6%. (Both in red).
The opposition had a different interpretation, which was to add ALL votes not for the MUD or PSUV to the opposition, which made it look fairly close, with a slight advantage to the opposition.
But the reality is that, as Martinez shows, of those additional votes, about 533,000 correspond to candidates who are part of Polo Patriotico, but were in municipalities where the votes were divided. Similarly, about 270,000 were for parties which are part of the opposition, but ran separate candidates from the MUD. Finally, about 300,000 votes can not be accredited to anyone, because the candidates were either supported by both sides or neither.
What the totals say is that the results up to yesterday, are quite close to the Lucena-style results with PSUV and its allies obtaining 53.7% of the total vote and the MUD and its allies 43.4% for a total difference of 1.1 million votes between the two sides.
This means that the results are even worse that they looked initially, as the opposition lost by about 8% of the vote, compared to the minimal difference (if any) of the April Presidential election. Thus, about the only positive thing you can say is that the opposition managed to win the more “emblematic” races, including most large cities, but losing Maracay, Distrito Libertador and Sotillo (Puerto la Cruz), as well as the “in your face” opposition victory in Barinas.
Chavismo on the other hand won the popular vote handily, won nineteen of twenty three states and only lost 26 cities when compared to the 2008 election. Maduro can also say that he is now more legitimate than he ever was and Capriles lost the plebiscite.
By now, even one Mayor elected within the MUD has already switched sides in Aragua, while the opposition lost one Deputy in the National Assembly because both the principal and his alternate were elected as Mayors in Zulia State.
Meanwhile, both sides are claiming victory with Maduro even saying his candidate won in Lagunillas (??). But what is true is that the Daka offensive, the so called “Cadakazo” worked, it changed public opinion overnight. And the opposition had no time or did not have time to react. Thus the loss. And it is a big loss.
And in the best Chavista (and Venezuelan!) fashion, to celebrate his victory, Maduro decides to give Venezuelan a “gift” by cancelling school all of next week with return to classes on Jan. 6th. Makes sense, the last thing Chavismo needs is an educated voter. Maybe they would start to understand what the populist game is all about.
Three I “forgots”: 1) I think we may have a referendum on the gasoline price increase, that would really divide the opposition, Capriles already came out against it. 2) Government discovers 40% of companies given CADIVI are fake, but it is someone else’s fault. 3) Apparently inflation in Novemeber was imaginary= i, because the number is already three days late.