Quico says: Hats off to Tibisay Lucena. The head of the National Elections Council is more ambitious than she seems. First, she pulled off a feat that seemed virtually impossible: she managed to announce that Chávez had lost a popular vote without increasing the CNE’s credibility in the eyes of the opposition. Considering that the whole reason the opposition didn’t trust CNE in the first place was that we doubted that they would ever accept a Chávez defeat, that took talent.
How did she do it? Her formula is simple: galloping opacity barely covered up with blatant lying and seasoned with undisguised contempt for those who question her.
The two official referendum results announcements Lucena has made so far (one on the night of the vote, the second a few days later) are not just incomplete, they’re patently incompatible with one another. That hasn’t escaped the attention of oppo activists, whose calls for clarification she has consistently met with sneering dismissal.
Now, Lucena’s kicking it up a notch: not just lying about the referendum results, but lying about her previous lies about the referendum results.
In an interview on VTV, she admitted CNE would never release the complete results of December’s vote, claiming this was “normal” because a few votes go unreported “in every election.” How few is “a few”? Tibisay said just 3% of tables remain outstanding, so we’re talking about more than a quarter of a million votes: the population of Punto Fijo, give or take.
There’s something frankly stomach turning about the whole question of precisely how many votes it’s OK not to count. But now that the principle’s been established, lets haggle over the price: it’s a lie that only 3% of voting tables are still outstanding. CNE’s second bulletin covered just 94% of voting tables, not 97% as she’s now claiming. So we’d be talking more about a Puerto Ordaz than a Punto Fijo, in terms of how many people it’s “normal” to disenfranchise.
But it gets worse, because that second bulletin wasn’t broken down geographically, and implied an improbable 98%+ abstention rate in some areas. In fact, we lack verifiable referendum results for 13.6% of voting tables. That’s over a million votes: more like the population of Valencia.
So what we have here is no mere lie. It’s a lie about a lie about a lie.
Think of it as higher-order mendacity: Tibisay’s seminal contribution to the theory and practice of revolutionary metabullshit.Caracas Chronicles is 100% reader-supported. Support independent Venezuelan journalism by making a donation.