Once in a while, a Venezuelan opposition leader screws up so badly that even those of us minded to give them the benefit of the doubt simply lose it and start screaming at our screens. Yesterday, Maracaibo mayor Eveling Trejo de Rosales put herself on the receiving end of a rage volcano with a move so craven, it’s hard to describe without an air sickness bag nearby.

Last week, in an unprecedented what-the-fuck moment even for this regime, the Supreme Tribunal said it was ok for Nicolás Maduro to approve the National Budget for 2017 without submitting it to the National Assembly as the Constitution ever-so-explicitly demands. Maduro did so two days later in an event at El Cuartel de la Montaña, of all places.

But Maduro went even further, threatening opposition governors and mayors with denying them funding if they refused to endorse the budget’s approval with their signature. Most dissident authorities simply ignored the threats, but Eveling decided to organize a get-together at her house yesterday with the rest of Zulia state’s opposition mayors to comply with Maduro’s demands and sign their support for the budget, merely a day after her husband, former governor and Un Nuevo Tiempo founder Manuel Rosales, was put under house arrest.

This isn’t the first time a UNT member sidesteps the MUD to back the government’s actions. In September, lawmaker Timoteo Zambrano, MUD’s former Foreign Affairs coordinator, shocked everyone by condemning Venezuela’s suspension from Mercosur. He was immediately removed from his post after his statements.

Today, Acción Democrática expelled mayors Ender Pino, Nidia de Atencio and Fernando Loaiza for joining Eveling’s little romp. UNT’s yet to issue any statements on the matter, but hopefully they’ll follow suit, because this undermines MUD’s authority to confront the government; it’s a disrespect not only to the people, whose lives will be razed by this budget, but also to members of other parties, especially those who have experienced chavismo’s violations firsthand, just like her husband.

Eveling and the other mayors mocked the electorate who voted them into office, openly supporting one of the government’s worst constitutional aberrations.

Unity’s a necessity in times as terrible as these, and we can’t afford to have elected authorities who are so willing to ditch their responsibility to voters and the Constitution in order to satisfy personal needs or political ambitions.

UNT and MUD should publicly condemn this decision, and so should we. This is the worst moment for our leadership to fail us.

31 COMMENTS

    • Mr Coronel, I wholeheartedly agree with you. When Rosales conceded early defeat in the presidential election, quite a few could smell a rat.

  1. Im not so riled up at anyone signing the dam budget because what you do from an act of coercion is not a free act of support but one of unvoluntary imposition , if they do sign they should say so somewhere, perhaps send a letter saying that their signature does not detract from their opposition to coercive acts from the regime or the unlawfulness of any regime measure…..

    Its very important that governors and mayors from the oppo not commit suicide and surrender the resources they need for their communities to continue functioning …….

    Remember a fellow who opposed signing some papers management wanted him to sign by signing them ‘Mickey Mouse’…

    • He misjudged the political timing, thinking that, even if incarcerated, it would be short, and he would be an Oppo hero; of course, he was grabbed off the plane on arrival, and his incarceration wasn’t so short, but he bargained himself out of it. Something similar with Leopoldo believing in DC. Would you would have $100 for every Oppo pronouncement since LL’s incarceration that he was to be imminently released for lack of evidence–you wouldn’t need any more CC contributors….

    • Porque algún trato sucio le ofrecieron.

      De hecho, el que lo mandaran para la casa con la familia en lugar de estar siendo torturado en prisión puede parecerle un trato bastante jugoso a la familia Rosales.

      No estoy justificando nada, simplemente intento encontrar la lógica que llevó a esa caraja a doblársele al régimen de esa forma.

  2. The regime seems to believe that any opposition signature makes their budget less coercive. But it doesn’t. Venezuelans have selected the people who must approve the budget: they are in the National Assembly.

    Does anyone believe that just any oppositionist can usurp that power? “Oh well, they failed to get legislative approval, which the constitution requires, but they did get a mayor to sign.”

  3. Quico is very quiet. At what point is he going to come out and say that civil disobedience may work better thank this pacifist crap they are trying?

  4. The MUD has to get rid of UNT as fast as they can. Better to be alone that in bad company. I know that unity is important, but UNT just buried itself into a pile of shit, and if the MUD doesn´t distance itself from them, they’re gonna end up being smeared with shit as well. It’s not like we need them to bring their supporters to our side. After this move they ain’t gonna have no supporters, not even in Zulia. Everybody is gonna hate them for being the treacherous stinking sell outs they are. You don’t want to be associated with them.

    • Look close enough at ANY Venezuelan political party and you’ll find the same thing. They’d have to get rid of each other if you followed the logic to the end.

      The ones who signed were thrown out of AD (3 of the 6). Gerardo Blyde left the party and I’m sure you’ll see a few more defections and expulsions.

      The last thing anyone needs is sending UNT out completely. They “clean” house, slap a few around and we go on.

      I’m also sure that the incident won’t be forgotten by folks back in Zulia, nor by the MUD either.

      I hate to say it, because no one likes a stinker, but for now we are going to need UNT to do its thing where its strongest and get past this dictatorship.

      Politics, man does it suck sometimes

    • Well, if MUD fails to keep the representatives, along with the Amazonas’s ones missing…the one and only success will be lost. It’s symbolic, even today they’re having an extraordinary session probably with no results at all. In the scenario of AN illegalization, etc. they may do it. But now? Not that I don’t agree with you, but well MUD has been all about “moral strenght”…

  5. The wheels have come off the wagon, entirely.

    I was just informed that my wife’s (Venezuelan expat) niece is a prostitute in Costa Rica. She left because there isn’t even a few SAILORS to bang in Venezuela any longer.

    How disgusting is that? My niece, who was never an achiever, has to leave Venezuela to find actual currency to exploit herself.

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