Friday 24 September 2021

Undecided Voters to Untie Presidential Candidates?

"There are no second class citizens" and "let's not fail our grandparents" among the rhetoric by two president candidates as they closed their campaigns on Saturday.

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With the politicking at an end, it is now up to the voters, mainly the undecided, to decide who will lead the country for the next four years.

Carlos Alvarado (L) and Fabricio Alvarado (R) vie for the presidential chair when Costa Rican voters cast their vote on Sunday, April 1

The latest poll by Center for Political Studies and Research (CIEP) of the University of Costa Rica reveals the two candidates are locked in a “technical tie”, with Fabricio Alvarado of the Partido Restauracion Nacional (PRN) with 43% and Carlos Alvarado of the ruling party, the Partido Accion Cuiadadana (PAC) 42% of the decided voters.

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The poll surveyed 1,202 people via home and cell phones between March 19-21 and has a margin of error of 2.8 points.

The poll reveals that 15% of Costa Rican voters remain undecided. Will they determine the results? In addition, the CIEP reveals that one-third of voters will not be doing so on Sunday, April 1.

Whoever wins faces the challenge of a legislative minority.

Under Costa Rica’s election rules, Saturday was the last day for campaigning.

Fabricio Alvarado closed his presidential campaign with criticism of the government of the PAC president, Luis Guillermo Solis, who is constitutionally barred from a consecutive mandate.

Fabricio Alvarado at the close of his presidential campaign on Saturday. Photo: Diana Méndez

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In a public event in Desamparados, along with hundreds of supporters, family, and friends, Fabricio took the opportunity to point out errors that, according to him, the Solis administration committed during four years of office. He spoke of the record number of homicides, of the Chinese cement scandal (Cementazo), that he (Solis) had forgotten the families and the figures of unemployment and social inequality

Carlos Alvarado closed his campaign calling for a national government. “There are no second class citizens (…) a government for all, for all families, for all people, there are no second class citizens, there is no second class family,” said the candidate.

Carlos Alvarado accompanied by figures of other political parties at the close of his campaign Saturday night. Photo: Gesline Anrango.

Along with high profile figures of PAC, the Partido Unidad Social Cristiana (PUSC) and the Partido Liberacion Nacional (PLN), Carlos asked the voters to be faithful to the DNA of Costa Rica, while reviewing the political facts that allowed the foundation of the Second Republic, as the constitution of social guarantees and the abolition of the army.

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“The name of Costa Rica means democracy, respect for human rights,” he said at the Plaza de las Garantias Sociales, in San José, Saturday night.

His last remarks were a jab at Fabricio Alvarado’s early statements to remove Costa Rica from the UN Human Rights Court, a court based in San Jose, for their ruling in February to allow same-sex marriages in the country.

He set a goal to make Costa Rica the most educated country in Latin America, while at the same time guaranteeing efficiency in public spending. He also emphasized the defense of the rights of the LGBTI population,

“Let’s not fail our grandparents fail,” said Carlos Alvarado.

 

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