Monday, February 16, 2009
El Presidente For Life?
Like New York Mayor Mike Bloomberg, Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez wanted to eliminate a term limit that would have kept him from running for office again.
Yesterday, a national referendum eliminating the term limits was passed. Clearing the way for Chavez to seek what he really wants: the office of the president for life.
The measure deeply divided Venezuela. There is a lot of discontent over the economy there. Now that oil prices, which drive the nation's economy, are down.
But Chavez had an ace up his sleeve during the election. He used state funds to push for passage of the referendum.
He must now stand for re-election in 2012. But with the help of his incumbency, he may just be successful again.
Chavez was one of George W. Bush's boogie men over the past eight years. This presented Chavez with the foil he needed to coalesce national unity over a target. But with Bush gone, Chavez needs to find new perceived enemies for his countrymen and women to rally around.
We talk about these issues and more weekdays at 5 PM New York time on News Talk Online on Paltalk.com