... and then there were none

Yesterday, chavista muckracker Alberto Nolia called for Henrique Capriles, governor or Miranda and Venezuela’s most popular opposition politician, to be disqualified from running in the 2012 elections.

PSUV strongman Diosdado Cabello, the man Capriles defeated in 2008, is calling for the same.

And Comptroller General Clodosbaldo Russián – the man who can, with one fell swoop of his mighty pen, bar any dangerous opponent from running, no questions asked and no murky due process getting in the way – is pleading for more powers.

As if it wasn’t clear enough yet, chavismo is testing the waters for one of its potential strategies – picking their own contender.

There is little we can do about this, other than worry and plan. But if there was ever an argument to choose the candidate soon, this was it.

If we don’t pick our own candidate, Chávez is going to pick it for us.

The best (and only) thing we can do is raise the cost of this move to Chávez. And it’s much more expensive, politically speaking, to bar the winner of an opposition primary than to bar a potential candidate.

If we don’t speed the plow, if we don’t increase the pressure for primaries soon and raise the cost to those foolishly plotting otherwise, chavismo will knock off any and all of the menacing figures, one by one. Give him enough time and no one will be safe until the only opposition figure left standing is someone completely unelectable.

Primarias ya.