This afternoon, PLN presidential candidate, Johnny Araya, threw in the towel in the 2014 presidential elections. But, his decision not to be “active” in the election process does not mean he is out.
Article 138 of Costa Rica’s political constitution prohibits a presidential candidate (or vice-predential candidates) from quitting, saying, no I don’t want to run anymore.
As explained by Luis Antonio Sobrado, head of the Elections Tribunal (TSE), the election process must continue and the people have the right to vote for a registered candidate.
So, in effect, Johnny Araya, although he has called it quits, could still be elected and on April 6 would be declared president.
So far this election has been interesting. We have seen a candidate (Araya) that was for all a “shoe-in” prior to the official start of the campaign. We saw a small start-up party the Frente Amplio obtain unprecedented support. And in the end on Feb. 2 we saw a “nobody” (Luis Guillermo Solís) declared a winner, but not enough to win outright. And for the second time in the history of the country, have run-off vote.
None of this – a presidential candidate quitting – has ever happened. No one really knows what will happen during the next 30 days leading up to the April 6 vote.
Will PLN supporters continue the campaign? And vote for “their” president? Will Costa Ricans bother to vote on April 6? And what if nobody comes out to vote? How will the campaign continue? Will Solís take a break and work on forming a government or continue on the campaign trail?
This pura vida!