BREAKING: CNE expands electoral audit, Capriles accepts it


After nine hours of discussion, the Electoral Board announced in cadena nacional that it will allow an expansion of the electoral audit (originally restricted to the 54% of electoral tables, it will now cover the other 46%).

The entire audit will be done over the period of a month by reviewing samples of ballot boxes during periods of ten days (400 boxes daily) in front of candidates’ representatives.

Henrique Capriles Radonski has accepted the CNE’s decision and believes that the set of irregularities he denounced in the last few days can be confimed in the expanded audit.

Full details about the audit are expected to be released in the next few hours/days.

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    • For what I heard and could understand (Tibi gave a very technical explanation), sounds like it isn’t in the same scope of what the Capriles camp was asking for.

    • Well this is a card I did not see coming, but I think this is very good news. The system has bent and that is something to be proud of. Although it says nothing about the outcome it proves that we are on the right track.

      It is also great to see that the bird man needs to swallow his words. And that is priceless!

  1. Question:

    Tibisay said that they were going to audit “the remaining 46%” as to make a 100% audit.

    She also said that they were going to pick a sample.

    What it’s weird for me is:

    1) A “54 + 46” audit is the same as a “100” audit?
    2) If the 54% audit sample was already taken an already audited, then, the sample for the remaining 46% has been established as well, because it’s the audit of the boxes not previously audited. Why would she say that they were going to pick a sample if it has already been done?

    Let’s see what henrique says.

    • I think this was some sort of “Solomonic decision” by the CNE: Giving something to the opposition but not necessarily all of what they wanted. Let’s wait for Henrique’s statement.

      One thing is for sure: It’s not a full recount.

  2. I really don’t get it. They are going to allow for the audit of the other votes, but is that electronic or manual? Also, are they allowing this simply because they have their ducks in a row now? What about the violations & intimidations that have occurred??

    I guess this expansion allows Capriles to scream about the other violations while the recount is occurring? I am hoping this is a small win, but it is hard to know what you are up against…

  3. Not a full re-count BUT.

    1) 46 % of the remainder gets the “three legged stool” treatment.

    2) Claims of voter intimidation, witness intimidation,etc. need to be put before the courts, not the CNE, Tibi Dixit. So these go in parallel to the audit.

    3) Thankfully Luisa Estela jumped the gun, so she should recuse herself (we can hope, yes?)

    Not everything we wanted, but a good first step

  4. It is so much easier to listen to Capriles than any other politician in the country at this point. Capriles does not speak as well as Chavez, but he is freakin’ good! Every speech expands his support!

    • This is totally secondary, but you made me think of it. Capriles is great at talking about the issue at hand, he has a good balance between charisma, being succinct and being firm.

      Chávez was great at talking about everything remotely related to anything. There’s a speech (In Santa Marta, first meeting with Santos) where he goes from a historical analysis of the political connotations of Bolívar’s last letters (which he quoted by heart) to a social exploration of Caribbean culture based on Love in the Time of Cholera. That and his famous diarrhea speech. The banana republic equivalent of a renaissance man.

      BTW, these are just comments about style, not political affiliation.

    • I just wish he finished his sentences. “Eso, en cualquier país democrático, se acept- es como si tú estuvieras montado en un- y lo único que estamos pidiendo es lo que en cualquier otro país- ” ad pressconferentium.

    • No.

      In any case that the audit demonstrates that capriles is the winner, then maduro is called off and capriles is proclaimed.

      • I think this means the CNE has got all its t’s crossed and its i’s dotted and they are ready to roll the dice on being able to weather the storm of accusations. In other words, they feel ready to call checkmate on Capriles and there is likely no chance he’ll show as the winner.

        I’m interested in the full details of how they will do this. It is difficult to spoof statistics, but not impossible as long as you stay within your CIs.

  5. I am not sure how this is going to work, CNE is talking about taking a sample, how is this sample going to be taken? HCR seems to say they are going to have a hand in the selection, plus is asking for additional information to be considered. I am confused.

      • Aren’t they auditing the remaining 46% that wasn’t checked on April 14th?

        The 54% is reached after adding up all the mesas audited in the country in the verificacion ciudadana, my understanding is that they’ll check those that weren’t audited that night.
        1 a 2 mesas – se audita 1 mesa
        3 a 5 mesas – se auditan 2 mesas
        6 a 8 mesas – se auditan 3 mesas
        9 a 10 mesas – se auditan 4 mesas
        > a 10 mesas – se auditan 5 mesas

        The interesting thing will be to check the cuadernos, huellas, etc, I didn’t understand if those were going to be reviewed deeply

          • Well… excuse me if I got it wrong, but, when you refer to the rolls and fingerprints, do you refer to los cuadernos de votacion? or to the fingerprint database of the SAI?

            Either way, those two elements are key to detect multicedulado/multivoter fraud. Otherwise, it’s just plain impossible.

          • “do you refer to los cuadernos de votacion? or to the fingerprint database of the SAI?”. Yes and yes.

          • Nojo, pa eso me meto en la pagina del CNE y hago la auditoria completa desde mi casa!

            Please, explain how fraud (if there was/is such) can be detected only by using the actas and ballots, other than an inconsistent number between the two, because without the cuadernos, forget about detecting multivoter fraud.

          • No prob, gustavo, thanks anyways, let’s hope that quico with his knowledge on triple congruence can enlighten us!

          • The most important technical details are to be decided and announced on Monday after a further CNE directive meeting. This includes the fingerprint database audit.

          • I don’t get it, Blyde is saying in Globovisión that they will check the cuadernos de votación… Either way, to do “la verificación ciudadana” is required to have the cuadernos, but my guess is that they won’t be able to check them deeply enough to see matching fingerprints and stuff like that

          • Perhaps the “cuadernos” will be audited after all but not in the same way Capriles asked in the first place. All doubts will be cleared when full details of the expanded audit are announced by the CNE.

  6. I still don’t understand what the CNE decision meant. I think it’s nothing,looking forward to read your analysis.

    P.D: A MONTH?!

    • They’re going to expand the current electoral audit to 100% but they won’t count all the ballots, review all electoral rolls or the register of all fingerprints. And yes, looks like is going to take a month.

      • So, el Universal is reporting that “El aspirante presidencial destacó que la verificación acordada debe incluir la incidencia de la huella, el conteo de las papeletas, la verificación de las actas y de los cuadernos de votación.”

        I wonder what gives?

        • Well, Tibi didn’t mention that. The full methodology of the audit is expected to be made public in the upcoming days. Then we all know what elements will be included.

    • To prevent a scene during the inauguration tomorrow, I am sure…Also, if it takes a month to audit, I bet they hope the opposition will have lost interest in all of it…

      • My exact thoughts, but if that is the case, and if in fact there was fraud, then, they are risking to be exposed in just a matter of (short) time, which is not that smart… pa que van a patalear tanto si se van a morir en la orilla?

        That’s why I think that particular explanation is not satisfactory :p

        • As long as the CNE does not have to open up the notebooks, and they have the supreme court throw out the intimidation charges, then they don’t risk the fraud being exposed for fraud…

          At least Capriles bought himself time…without the violence (thank God)…I think he will use that time to get more public exposure and convert more Chavistas to the MUD…He is playing the long-game…

          • “He is playing the long-game…”

            AAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAA!!!!!!! This is driving me crazy!!!! :p

            But well, in the end, long-term > short term, so, what the heck, tocara seguir esperando…

        • Well, Juan follows this guy on twitter

          Ricardo Hausmann ‏@ricardo_hausman 6m
          Por una vez, los presidentes de Unasur actuaron con responsabilidad. Pidieron recuento. El gobierno cedió antes de q lo hicieran publico.

          Ahora, y como se dice en criollo, y quien carrizo es el tipo ese pa saber eso?

          Other than that, it would be a plausible explanation, also, it would explain why tiby took so long to give in, a late night call from peru “tiby, mija, dale al majunche ese lo que pide, me tienen frito aqui y no me traje suficientes maletines”.

          • Ricardo Hausmann:
            PhD in Economics, Cornell University, US. 1985-91, Professor of Economics, Instituto de Estudios Superiores de Administracion; 1988-91, Visiting Fellow, University of Oxford; 1992-93, Minister of Planning of Venezuela; 1994-2000, Chief Economist, Inter-American Development Bank. Currently: Professor of Economic Development, Kennedy School of Government, Harvard University; Director, Center for International Development, Harvard University. Cowan Professor, Santa Fe Institute. Member of the Advisory Board of Abengoa, Former Member of the Board, Central Bank of Venezuela. Former Chairman of the IMF – World Bank Development Committee, Former Chairman of the International Growth Advisory Panel of South Africa, Former Member of the Board, Accion International, CANTV. Former President, Latin American and Caribbean Economic Association.

          • I wonder if he is good friends with Dr. Borjas. Seems natural given macrosocial nature of Venezuelan-Cuban relations taken to a microsocial level.

          • The Unasur people probably consulted with him, given he’s the one that came up with a whole new statistical method for detecting electoral fraud based on correlating the differences of errors between two subsets of electoral data against an independent set of data.

    • The Unasur meet also probably pressured Maduro into this quick temporary solution cause he’s gonna screw us all again within a month

  7. Hate to say it but looks like the GAC critique ie. show me the money, was spot on. This is a face saving way out. I’d love for someone to explain why not.

  8. My take is that they will do the same kind of audit that was done on 54% of the tables the day of the election, but this time on 46% of the non audited tables, 400 per day, emitting a total of 3 reports, 1 every 10 days. If this is correct, I also take it that the audit includes comparing/contrasting the actas against the libro de votantes against the boletas against the CNE numbers. Is this right?

  9. Nice way for the CNE to avoid further international pressure. Tibi and her goons gave in to an “audit” without defining what said audit involves (will they check the cuadernos? Captahuellas information? Nobody knows). Maybe they thought they could define it later, but Capriles and the opposition took it to themselves to define the audit: “I accept the audit to check the papeletas, actas and cuadernos. Thank you CNE!”. This generated a few funny tweets from God-given.

    A win for us: we move forward. Capriles has shown that the “all-powerful government” can be pressured to give in to the demands of the people if we all push together. This is vital for morale. In the meanwhile the election is not resolved and Capriles gets more national exposure. Also note that Capriles is still keeping his cards close to his chest (and if he’s bluffing, he is doing a damn good job at it!)

    PD: Maduro’s trip to Peru was useless 🙂 I hope at least he got to eat some lomo saltado.

  10. They have finally found the “chavez way”. This is without doubt what Chavez would have done: agree to do it, recognize the opposition for five minutes, do it half-assed. By the end of the month, the opposition will have lost momentum and we are back to where were. Yes it’s frustrating, but it ensures short term peace. Yes probably some external entity has something to do with it, I can imagine Rousseff saying she won’t show up unless…

    Moving on…

  11. There’s something that I haven’t really seen much people around here discuss, let’s say that the audit reveals that there were enough discrepancies to prove that there was fraud, do you think the rojo rojito CNE its going to admit they fucked up? Or rather, that they are going to confess it?

  12. Well, this totally debunks the analysis offered previously by Mr Toro, who seems a bit out of touch with the local reality. This always was a political problem calling for a political solution. This was never about posting hard evidence of numerical fraud in a website so people of all bands could scream and judge the validity of the evidence and turn it into a circus before the negotiations even happened. Also, it was never about convincing foreign journalists about a fraud. The message was about getting a simple recount and use public pressure to embarrass the government for not accepting such a common sense procedure..

    While some readers here were freaking out about “conditional” fraud and even suggesting that an “avispao” politician like Capriles would burn his credibility so stupidly , Mr. Capriles was negotiating a political solution with CNE. That’s why they were extremely cautious not to say “fraud” or insult Mrs. Lucena. The focus was only on a recount to clarify things and bring closure. Previously Mrs. Lucena had asked MUD not to discuss the bulk of the alleged voting irregularities to the media and MUD complied by being vague and never fully revealing the evidence making easier for Lucena to accept the request.

    • Do you have evidence for Lucena actually reaching out to the MUD to keep the alleged irregularities private? That seems like the logical thing in any event, but I wouldn’t have expected Lucena to “reach out” to those ends.

    • Sorry hermano, my predictions is that Quico will have the last laugh in this one. State abuses yes, forcing people to vote under threats yes, political persecution indeed. But if our claims are “300k is a tie and we win with 70k from abroad”, “red herrings”, and “elves fix the cajas while San Nicolas sleeps”, once cajas, books and everything else are verified in the audits, we will be laughed at. And I have never hoped to be proven wrong than this time.

  13. There is one thing that has been worrying me since Capriles asked for this audit: What guarantees do we have they haven’t messed up with the boxes since they left the electoral centers? For all I know, nothing prevents someone from changing those boxes. The tape with signatures around the box? Easy to fake. What are they going to check all those signatures are really legitimate? I don’t think so.

    On the other hand, even if they don’t change the boxes, the important thing were the irregularities. They should have concentrated on proving that they really happened (something they haven’t done yet). If a witness was kicked out of an electoral center, and then, taking advantage of that, they stuffed the box with votes from people that didn’t show up, how is that going to be found out with an audit? Even though fraud would have been committed, the actas and the votes in the box would match in such a case, you know.

    I think the whole thing is just a big waste of time, if you ask me. Although it might be true that Capriles had no option but to request the audit, for reasons I won’t discuss right now.

    • Capriles’ goal now is to be a paragon of respecting the vote and counting the votes. The results are already predestined. It’s the long view for him. The whole I won thing was mostly a spectacle to rile up the idiot Maduro.

      • So, JC is that in your opinion what the whole thing was about? A show? Did the show justify blatant lies to the face of his followers, the country and the world, like the one at the infamous press conference?

  14. In a few days, Capriles proved that he is the undisputable and democratic leader of the opposition, delegitimized maduro within the PSUV and dismantled the “coup” accusations since the CNE admitted the need for a recount. De paso, dejó como una “plasta” a Luisa Estella, quien ahora se tiene que inhibir por haber dado opinión adelantada. He will also have the luxury of a few days on the international stage to present his evidence and scare the shit out of the rabos de paja. Meanwhile, the social and economic shit will hit the fan on maduro’s watch. Simply brilliant.

  15. This is a win-win for the opossition.
    1. Should the auditoria proves no wrongdoing it would prove the system works so that next time abstentionist would not have an excuse not to vote! In this scenario it will be evident that if only 350,000 more would have voted for Capriles he would have won. And even more important they could not argue that Capriles was bought by the government.
    2. Should the auditoria shows wrongdoing then it its obviously a win.

    Capriles did the only thing he could do: ask for a recount knowing before hand that he would not get all he wanted; still this is just the first round.

    Plese have a little faith.

  16. The devil is in the details , the logistics of what is proposed is such that it might lend itself to a subtle form of sabotage by the CNE , or the Regimes followers , the Scheduling appears tight to me , Still, more information will be subject to closer scrutiny and something may come out of it which favours Capriles position, What I heard Capriles say is that from the data they had available on the night of Ap 14 they had every reason to think they had won and then CNE came with results which didnt tally with their expectations , When they went into the details of what had happened during the day , they discovered violations and anormalities that made the results suspicious , and that to clear those suspicious they proposed a recount of all votes . If the recount resulted in making the CNE results credible despite the violations then they would accept Maduros election , meantime they held their recognition in abeyance. . There never was an absolute rejection of the possibility that Maduro might have won the elections albeit through the use of electioneering abuses and unlawful advantages . In the heat of the fray this fundamental message often got lost or obscured . Its deplorable how nuances and shades in a message become the victim of the maelstrom of passions that surround it. Capriles decision to ask for a recount was an intelligent political move which has given him and his now huge following quite a few advantages . the regime through denunciation of the electoral abuses stands discredited , they had ultimately to concede what they had rejected through acts of sheer manipulation and force . the alleged acts of violence which the regime heaped on Capriles will be the subject of a Unasur supervised scrutiny , they showed the world their ugly authoritatian side which might seem to have gone unpercieved but which people all over L America and the World took note of. These kind of political moves seek not an absolutely succesful result , but the gaining of an advantage which later can be built upon .

  17. Question(s): Your patience please….12,000 ballot boxes at 5, 10, 20 presumed questionable ballots apiece = 60,000, 120,000 ballots; 240,000 ballots and so on. What happens if only 5 per box show irregularity? Is the scale of the “ballot fraud” the key driver in assessing the legitimacy of the process or will the scope of the disrespect for a free and fair electoral process be decisive?

    • I can’t answer those questions because I’m not an electoral expert or even good at math. #BachillerEnHumanidades

      • How will the myriad violations of the electoral process get a hearing? No extra points if you use integers or algorithms in response. I recollect that a former President of the USA qualified as an engineer and likely still has a sliderule somewhere in his pencilcase…

  18. In both cases the vote was allowed at a late hour (5:50 pm in the Youtube video, and 5:00 pm in the article in El Nacional, were it was verifiied by Unasur braziian representatves in Santa Rosa de Lima school, in Baruta.

    The fingerprint machines may have an algorithm that after certain hour (4:30 pm, for ex.) any person that puts his finger is allowed to vote, in his way the government can bring late voters and they can vote for other people who have not voted….

  19. I keep seeing video clips and reading news articles talking about 100% of the tables being audited, 54% from election day plus the new 46%. This is not what CNE said in cadena; they said 46% of the non audited tables, which would come to a total of 75% of the tables audited.

    Is 100% or is it 75% total?


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