Within the last hour, three separate chavista governors have announced that they have either filed injunctions to stop the Recall process in their states, or that those injunctions have now been granted.

What looks at first like a major blow against the recall should instead be read as a sign of an unprecedented split within PSUV, the ruling party. Why? Because these three governors — Ameliach, El Aissami and Rangel Gómez — have had to go to state tribunals where they live to seek these rulings. State tribunals in Venezuela are weak, barely relevant at this level, where practice has always been to file injunctions directly at the PSUV-controlled Supreme Court (TSJ).

Read just between the lines and the dynamic here is clear: these guys tried to get a TSJ ruling to stop the recall and couldn’t get it. Now they’re trying to force the tribunal’s hand: strong-arming Calixto Ortega and Nicolás Maduro into handing down a ruling they’ve had reason not to hand down so far.

The game just got extremely dangerous. TSJ will now have to rule, and either swallow the humiliation of being dictated to by lower courts and accelerating a highly volatile protest agenda, or against them, in an unprecedented rebuff of powerful chavista faction heads.

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  1. I saw about an hour ago on Globovision that the TSJ had anulled the 1% collection of figures in Aragua. I asked my sra what it meant and she said they’re looking for a way to stop it altogether.

  2. It might be that they’ve decided to do it this way to spread the blame. “See, it’s not just the TSJ, it’s all the courts!” It makes it seem more like law if everyone is doing it.

    Odd that they would do it now though. It won’t make demonstrators/signers very happy to find out that: 1) You must get 20% signatures in each and every province, and 2) You are forbidden from collecting signatures it in some provinces.

  3. I’m not sure though that I’d go so far as to characterize this as some sort of split in the PSUV. I suspect anything described above would be carefully orchestrated from Miraflores.

  4. The socialist mindset is evident here. “It is against the law for the degenerate, worthless, majority of the people to have a say in their futures. Their future is for the state, and only the state, to determine! They must face JUSTICE for their crime of questioning us. We are the armed authorities on everything! We determine what you eat, where you live, where you work, how you work, what you are paid, and what you think. Bow down, scum! You exist only by our gracious consent, which we can revoke at any time! You are NOTHING before us! This is for the GOOD AND THE FREE WILL OF THE FREE PEOPLE!! FOR NATIONAL INDEPENDENCE!!” Karl Marx couldn’t have written it better, may his blood-soaked soul rot in Hell (until he realizes what an ass he was).

    • Don’t forget the “Revolution”, you know, the one that entrenches a privileged elite ruling class and enslaves everyone else.

  5. I subscribe to the theory that this is symmetry.

    If they ruled it was to be 20% by state, then impugning the origin of the RR & the collection of 1% of signatures by state makes cancelling it “more justifiable ”

    This isn’t a split, this is them upping the ante.

    Next they’re going to round up a couple patsies and use their “patriota cooperante ” faceless accusation tool to wrap it all up in a bow, arresting a few signers to try to intimidate the rest.

    I hope the MUD doesn’t back down. The only way to go is forward.

  6. Just a few calls from a CIA operative to the judges with a Jack Bauer voice: “If you make the mistake you want to do, no Disneyland for you, but if you do what the people expect from you, then Disneyland will be awaiting for you.”

    So easy.

    I heard that all the Chavistas VIPs are crazy about the Disney theme parks and the characters there. Something to do with growing up poor and still having that void inside their hearts about Mickey Mouse and Donald Duck not hugging them when kids.

    Please CIA, just mention Disney and you will have the TSJ judges in your pockets!

  7. Three powerful original Chavista figures/governors effectively blocking the RR is not weakness/split, but just a strategy to get the TSJ off the hook temporarily for “being the bad guy”. The real weakness is in the fear of a large RR turnout/repudiation of the Regime in the eyes of world observers, to see that “the emperor hath no clothes”, although this type of turnout was questionable, and never would have achieved an effective 20% anyway….

    • Running out of tricks, maybe(?) This is just Amazonas warmed over. “Inconstitucional” has been used so often, you almost expect 5pm to be declared “inconstitucional”.

  8. I know the expression “poner la torta”, but is there an expression “aqui se paro el pajaro”? (Pa’ ver pa’ donde vuela”.)

  9. So, we knew this was coming – there’s no split. What will MUDs next step be? Try to have the TSJ overthrow the decision (and put everything on hold again indefinately) or treat the regime as the dictatorship it is (and have themselves disqualified/illegalized for the governor elections?)

  10. Sorry to ruin everyone’s mood but chabestias have the power, money and guns.
    MUD is not more than a 3Km packed meat on a march.
    Game over, let’s flee and move on.

  11. You have to be an actual moron to believe that this could be interpreted as a split between PSUV factions.

    The TSJ ruled that every state should collect 20% signatures, and now these minions will invalidate the collection process at the state level, so that the CNE is able to stop the collection signature process nationwide on the grounds that some state legislature invalidated the collection process on their states.

  12. Seriously, with all the roadblocks, stalling, double talk, and shenanigans the Chavistas have pulled to postpone the RR, what makes anyone believe they will ever allow it to happen, when doing so is like lighting their house on fire. And what’s to stop them from just calling the whole thing off, for whatever “reasons” they can drum up? And who’s to stop them from doing – per usual – exactly what they want to hold power? Maybe if the bond swap tanks they could find themselves in an international bind that could further limit their purchasing power. Otherwise it looks like this ship will keep clunking along as the main sails are shredded and the bilge fills up even as dupes keep braying about the Revolution. The refugee problem is starting to get intense all over South America with Venezuelans pouring into Brazil etc and corpses keep exploding in the hospitals. Goddam this has gotten tragic and bizarre and more pathetic by the day. Fucking hard to watch, especially with two kids still in CCS.

  13. Chamo. Desde que te leo lo veo con un monton de esperanza que estes en lo cierto, pero con los pies en la tierra se que no es asi. Deja de leer tanto libro e interpreta mejor desde lo que se ve. Ellos no estan divididos nada. Ellos saben que tienen el poder y lo estan administrando. Porque meter las demandas ahora y no hace un mes? Simplemente han dejado pasar el tiempo. Ahora la gente se arrecha, luego pasan los dias y como si nada. Es el mismo libreto: enervalos, luego enfrialos y asi van perdiendo la energia. Esto ya se perdio, la unica forma que caigan es corriendo sangre, y lamentablemente, ellos tienen las de ganar. Quizas eso necesita Venezuela, una catarsis de sangre.

  14. It sound like coupe to me.

    Maduro is out jetsetting in the Middle East and they pull this in his absence?

    As Quico says. It is not as if the TSJ is shy to do as it is told so why would they go to bumfuck Venezuela to get these injuctions?

    So whatever dark force coaxing the government to a referendum has to respond or fold.

  15. Oh! Sweet summer child! Do you really believe this is not a well planned strategy by the PSUV mafia? Lots of advantages in splitting the decision among regional courts,lots of “chiripas” versus one giant cockroach.Mr ElAssaimi, you diabolical! (Simpsons dixit)

  16. Death by 1000 cuts …… and the cuts just keep on coming …. You know there will be more.

    They are doing it a little bit at a time so as to keep international pressure at bay (or so they think)

  17. I think reading this as a PSUV split is wishful-thinking. I opt for the easier explanation: if you start in Primera Instancia de lo Penal regional, you have to go up there to the TSJ until a final ruling comes. This long process of the demand going up from regional institutions to TSJ’s Sala Penal, they saying is not their competence, etc. until it reaches TSJ’s Sala Electoral can take YEARS. A frigging decade, or more if they purposely delay it. If you start with the TSJ’s Sala Electoral from the start to try to make it less “golpe de estado”, things may be harder when trying to delay it later. This just makes it easier for anyone to abandon trying to fight the decision. This, in my opinion, says the plan is well-executed among factions and that they believe they’re going to stay here for a long, long, long time.


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