Of course, it’s not written in stone that DC1 is the circuit that will definitely tip us over into a simple majority. The two other circuits most likely to tip us to a simple majority are Lara 2, and Guárico 2: much more rural circuits where the opposition has historically struggled.
a.k.a., To Carora and beyond!
Where the hell is that? Rural Western Lara, Carora
Municipios Jiménez, Moran, Andres E Blanco, Torres, Urdaneta, Crespo
This rural circuit elects two deputies. The opposition has not done brilliantly in the past. Chavismo won it easily five years ago (in what was a three-way race back then, as Henri Falcon’s PPT was running as an alternative option). This time, it elects two deputies – down from 3 in 2010 – and the opposition’s choices are both…interesting.
First we have Roland Carreño. Yes, the Roland Carreño. Better known – in fact, exclusively known – as a farándula journalist, I never even knew Roland Carreño was into politics. Carreño was born out here – in Aguada Grande, to be precise – but whether he’s spent much time here in the last few decades seems doubtful. How impressed the good burghers of Carora are meant to be to have the king of the Caracas gossip column representing their interests in parliament is hard to say.
Then we have Solbella Mejías. Yes, the Solbella Mejías. A former opposition-alligned member of the National Electoral Council, Mejías isn’t exactly doing a great deal to showcase our earnest conviction that people who are picked to run elections shouldn’t be explicitly partisan. I mean, isn’t this kind of thing exactly what used to drive us mad about Jorge Rodríguez? Anyway, Mejía seems to be another beneficiary of the mad, last-minute scramble to find women candidates when CNE announced a new gender balance requirement.
Also, she’s married to MP Edgar Zambrano, who leads the MUD’s list vote in Lara. Both are AD leaders. So we get a dose of nepotism, too, mixed in with the adequismo endógeno. Lovely people.
Be warned: his jingle may give you ear cancer,
The other incumbent, Julio Chavez is, second only to Governor Reyes Reyes, the most important PSUV guy in the State. He’s the current head of the AN’s Mass Media Commission and has pushed restrictive legislation against free press. He also constantly denounces many opposition plans against the State.
As expected, both are giving away lots of goodies in their campaign.
If this Delphos poll published by Prodavinci is accurate: the MUD has a fighting chance in Lara 2: it’s ahead by a whisker, 42% to 39 %, with 14% undecided. Really a dead heat. We better hope we do better than that: if the opposition can’t win out here, it’s hard to see how it can win nationally.
Another possible tipping point state for the simple majority is:
a.k.a., Altagracia de Plo Plo
Where the hell is that? Noreste de Guárico: Altagracia de Orituco
Municipios Monagas, Chaguaramas, Ribas, San Jose de Guaribe
Another rural circuit, this one the site of the recent assassination of an AD regional leader. In fact, it was while he was on the stage campaigning for local folk-singer/opposition activist Rumualda (“Rummy”) Olivo that Luis Manuel Diaz was gunned down on stage. Worrying: we can’t afford to lose places like this.
The PSUV candidate, Juan Marín, isn’t nearly as much fun:
His jingle’s pretty catchy, though: