Over at Foreign Policy’s Transitions blog, I ponder the unsettled tone of the Capriles campaign. One day he is an attack dog, the next day he is a uniter. One day he convinces us the CNE is unreliable, but then he asks us to go out and vote massively. The campaign seems to not have settled on a core message.
My money quote:
“The problem with [Capriles’] strategy is that one can be an attack dog and run a very negative campaign, or one can run as a uniter, but it’s very hard to run as both. Capriles may think that denouncing the government’s abuses helps him soften Maduro’s support, but in the end it will only soften his own. His insistence on planting doubts about the fairness of the vote is simply confusing to voters.
Part of the reason for Capriles’ seeming lack of discipline may come from the rushed nature of the election. While Capriles was clearly preparing for a campaign, the uncertainty surrounding the exact date of the election (Chávez died a month ago) meant crucial decisions about the campaign were postponed until a timetable was firm.”