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  Ecuadorian general election, 2013
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Famous Mortimer
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« Reply #25 on: February 08, 2013, 11:58:17 am »

I was going to ask about the Democratic Left. Just go with your own instinct about what to tell us.
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Sir John Johns
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« Reply #26 on: February 10, 2013, 12:12:35 am »

In the news:

Electoral Council finally lift the ban on exit polls. In 2011, exit polls were notoriously bad; they predicted a large victory of the “yes” while actual results gave a tighter victory. Several polls companies announced that they will not made exit polls as they lack of time to prepare the polls.

Electoral Court orders the ban of the Correa's ad showing children in violation of the Electoral Law.

I was going to ask about the Democratic Left. Just go with your own instinct about what to tell us.

Probably a bad idea considering my lack of brevity. I had begun by writing something on the Democratic Left but this was so confuse that I finally chose to follow a chronological approach beginning in the 1980s. However, I rapidly began to think that many things were incomprehensible without an elaborate explanation on the historical Costa/Sierra divide and the particular nature of Ecuadorian populism (probably not that particular but I have a very incomplete knowledge of Latin America political history outside Mexico, Brazil, and Argentina). So finally I wrote a very long post on Ecuadorian history with some digressions on two areas where I'm feeling a bit incompetent: demographics and political system.

Sorry for:
- writing in a bad English
- turning this thread into a complete mess
- being unable to write in a succinct style (I'm very afraid to forget something)

Pre-colonial era and independence war

Ecuador is fractured by a huge regional divide between the coastal provinces (the Costa) and the highland provinces (the Sierra). This divide is reflected in the traditional rivalry between the coastal city of Guayaquil and the capital Quito. At the beginning of the 19th century, the Sierra was the most populated region and was favored by Spanish colonial authorities over the Costa. While indigenous influence was strong in the Sierra, it was far more weak in the Costa.

In 1808, one of the first (if not the first) colonial revolt against Spanish (or more fairly Napoleonic) colonial rule erupted in Quito. The revolt was crushed by Spanish troops. It bestowed Quito the title of Luz de América (the Light of America) and the bicentennial of the event was celebrated in 2009 and presented as the bicentennial of Ecuadorian independence. The second colonial revolt began in 1820 in Guayaquil. On the contrary of Quito's revolt, which was loyalist and anti-Napoleonic, the Guayaquil revolt was of liberal inspiration. Quito remained passive and was liberated from Spanish rule only after the general Antonio Sucre defeated the Spanish army on the slopes of the Pichincha volcano in 1822. Quito and Guayaquil were then merged into the Gran Colombia until the breakup of this state in 1830.

The Conservative Era

The first years of independent Ecuador history were characterized by political instability, civil wars and economic troubles (I read somewhere that the widespread counterfeiting of the national currency was a big problem). Wars erupted with both Peru and Colombia and the country was several times invaded. In 1859, the conservative Gabriel García Moreno came to power in Quito and the next year crushed the Peruvian-backed rival government which had been proclaimed in Guayaquil. After seeking to turn his country into a French protectorate, García Moreno (himself a Guayaquileño) came to the conclusion that Ecuador could only be united under the Catholic faith. He established a quasi theocratic state and ruled as an autocrat until his assassination in 1875. García Moreno's Conservative Party retained absolute control of the power until the Liberal Revolution of 1895. The Conservative Party ruled with the support of the Catholic Church and the Sierra's large landowners and favored a protectionist policy aiming at preserving the domestically oriented Sierran agriculture.

At the same time, the Costa experimented an economic boom thanks to the production of cacao and other export crops (notably coffee and banana). Consequently, the Costa's liberal bourgeoisie pushed to greater commercial opening. The Costa bourgeoisie was despised by its Sierran counterpart which referred to Costan inhabitants as monos (“monkeys”).

The Liberal Era

Several revolts against the Conservative rule occurred in the Costa until the Liberal Eloy Alfaro (from the Costa) defeated the conservative army and became president in 1895. He ruled the country, with an interruption between 1901 and 1906, until his resignation in 1911. Alfaro pursued an anticlerical policy and notably introduced civil marriage, legalized divorce, abolished the death penalty, and established a secular school system. One of his greatest achievements is probably the building of the railway between Quito and Guayaquil, which was opened in 1908. This late date (explained by the hostile geography) is very telling about how the Costa and the Sierra were isolated of each other. Alfaro was arrested in Guayaquil in 1912 while attempting to return to power and transferred in Quito (via the railway he had built) where he was lynched by an angry mob. Eloy Alfaro's legacy was claimed by various liberal, leftist and populist parties. The 2008 Constituent Assembly was symbolically convened in Alfaro's birthplace, the city of Montecristí in coastal province of Manabí.

The Liberal Party (officially Ecuadorian Radical Liberal Party, PLRE) maintained itself in power by rigged elections throughout the 1910s and the 1920s. However, the real power passed into the hands of Guayaquil's bankers who funded government expenditures by issuing banknotes without regard for gold reserves. The massive influx of banknotes, combined to the collapse of world cacao prices plunged Ecuador into economic turmoil in the 1920s. In July 1925, a military group staged a coup (the Revolución Juliana) and then named former Quito mayor Isidro Ayora as president. Ayora created the first National Bank, granted women the right to vote and enacted a new constitution. This new constitution permitted deputies to remove ministers; this provision, preserved in most of the successive constitutions until the 1990s, will greatly contributed to the destabilization of political life. Indeed, Ayora resigned in 1931 after the Congress had spent its time to obstruct his policy and to remove his ministers. Meanwhile, the Great Depression had exacerbated the economic problems breeding social unrest.

The country descended into chaos: from 1931 until 1948, none of the countless presidents managed to finish their terms. Two political figures from this period deserved mention: Carlos Arroyo del Río and José María Velasco Ibarra. A liberal from Guayaquil linked to the Coastal oligarchy, Arroyo del Río was fraudulently elected president in 1940 and near-finished his four-year term. The most important event in his administration was the war with Peru in July 1941 over sovereignty over a large Amazonian area. Peru army won an easy victory as Arroyo del Río, who was more focused on keeping power rather than winning the war, maintained the bulk of the troops in Quito and refused to distribute weapons to civilians. Arroyo del Río was forced to sign the Rio de Janeiro Protocol that recognized Peruvian sovereignty over the dispute area. He was then ousted in 1944 and replaced by José María Velasco Ibarra, the other political figure that emerged from the 1930s and 1940s. A Quiteño, Velasco Ibarra was previously elected president in 1934 and ousted the following year. He also probably won the rigged election of 1940 before he was forced to flee in exile. Nevertheless, as previously stated, he was returned in office in 1944 as the head of a motley coalition of conservatives, socialists, communists and dissident liberals; he was elected president by the Congress and not by popular vote. After continuous political struggles and the adoption of two successive constitutions, Velasco Ibarra was finally ousted after three years in office.
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Sir John Johns
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« Reply #27 on: February 10, 2013, 12:17:43 am »

The 1948-1963 years

After successive transitional presidencies, the first fair presidential election (previous elections were either certainly rigged or probably rigged) was organized in 1948 and won by the dissident liberal Galo Plaza Lasso, a former mayor of Quito, and also son of a previous president. As the illiterates couldn't vote, the election concerned only a small part of the population. Plaza Lasso presided over the banana boom which propelled Ecuador as the first banana-exporting country and enjoyed political stability. The 1952 election was won by Velasco Ibarra, who spent the previous years in exile. Velasco was supported by the falangist Ecuadorian Nationalist Revolutionary Action (ARNE), the Guayaquil-based populist Concentration of Popular Forces (CFP, I will later develop more on this party), and dissident conservatives. Once in office, he proved unable (or unwilling) to keep his coalition together and send the CFP leader, Carlos Guevara Moreno, in exile. His administration was also marked by countless ministerial reshuffles and by a costly policy of major works. He however managed to complete his term, the only one out of his five, thanks to the buying of army support by an increase of military budget and to the effectiveness of his interior minister Camilo Ponce Enríquez.

This last was barely elected president in 1956 against Raúl Clemente Huerta, the candidate of a coalition of liberals, socialists and communists. Ponce was supported by his own party, the Sierra-based Social Christian Party (PSC), by the ARNE, by the old Conservative Party, and by Velasco Ibarra. The latter broke almost immediately with Ponce and go into a self-exile in Buenos Aires. He returned in 1960 to run once more time for president, apparently under his own party, and won in a landslide (48% compared to 22% for his nearest opponent). Velasco Ibarra took a nationalist and anti-American line. He openly rejected the Rio de Janeiro protocal and sent his vice president, Carlos Julio Arosemena, an outspoken advocate of the Cuban Revolution, in a trip to Moscow. However, Velasco's coalition once more broke out over deteriorating economy and political struggles over Velasco's succession. The growing opposition between the president and his vice president degenerated in violent confrontation. In October 1961, a gun battle broke out in Congress between Velasco followers and Arosemena who presided the legislature. Finally, Velasco ordered the dismiss and the arrest of Arosemena. Arguing that Velasco had acted illegally, the military removed him from office and forced him into exile. After internal fights within the army command, air force prevails over the other branches and Arosemena was sworn in office in November 1961 as Velasco's successor.

A colorful populist from Guayaquil, Arosemena was the first politician from the Costa to assume office since 1948 (note, however, that, if the electoral results I have found are correct, Velasco Ibarra won Guayas province in 1952 and 1960). Arosemena tried to lead a progressive policy and notably promote the creation of two universities in Guayaquil. He also attempted to preserve diplomatic ties with Cuba. The opposition deputies tried unsuccessfully to use his notorious alcoholism to remove him from office. Finally, Arosemena was ousted and deported to Panamá by the military in July 1963 after having “shouted abuse at U.S. Ambassador Maurice Bernbaum, vomited in front of the gathering and committed 'even more indecorous acts'” during a reception (Wikipedia, quoting a Miami News article). U.S. government was heavily suspected to have intervened to remove Arosemena.

Digressions about Ecuadorian demographics

Arosemena presidency coincide more or less with the swing of the economical and political pendulum from the Sierra to the Costa. This is apparently in the 1950s
(haven't found reliable source) that the Coastal population surpassed that of the Sierra thanks to the banana boom. As I stated before while the Indigenous are almost absent from the Costa region, they have a significant presence in Sierra. The following is very confuse to me, this must absolutely not be considered as authoritative.

In my understanding, economic development of the Costa region in the twentieth century attracted migrants from the Sierra region, and notably indigenous workers who lost part of their native culture and cross-bred with other communities. These mestizos, who mostly work in the agricultural sector, are referred as Montubios or Montuvios. They are concentrated in the Costa's provinces of Los Rios (35.05% of the population according to the 2010 census), Manabí (19.18%), Guayas (11.27%), and Santa Elena (4.91%). 13.16% of the Costa's population self-identified as Montubios, only 0.95% in Sierra region, and 0.65% in Amazonian provinces (Oriente). While Mestizos officially account for 72% of the total Ecuadorian population, they are in fact informally divided in several groups along a mixture of ethnic, linguistic, and social features. Beside Montubio, the derogatory term of Cholo is also used to label another type of Mestizos. I don't know what this term covers exactly. Cholos seems to be rather associated with the Sierra but they are apparently also present in the Coastal province of Manabí. Cholos are considered as being supportive of Lucio Gutiérrez. I also found the term of Longo and have no idea to what it referred to.

As I stated previously, Afro-Ecuatorians are concentrated in the Coastal province of Esmeraldas (43.91% of the population). The 2009 census distinguishes three groups: Afroecuatoriano or Afrodescendiente; Mulato; and Negro. I have no idea what is the difference between the first and the third. Total of these three categories accounts for 10.69% in the Costa, 3.32% in the Sierra, and 3.13% in the Oriente.

Indigenous accounts for 1.09% of the population in the Costa, 11.32% in the Sierra, 33.12% in the Oriente, and 7.03% of the total Ecuadorian population. This number is generally considered as underestimate as censuses are based on self-identification. Some Indigenous prefer to declared themselves as Mestizos. It's also important to note that Ecuadorian indigenous movements, contrary to the Bolivian ones (I don't know for Peru), as far as I know, never advocated the formation of an indigenous breakaway state nor the restoration of the Inca Empire. Also, no guerrilla movement managed to establish a base in indigenous countryside (a significant difference with Peru).

The 1963-1972 decade

The military junta that succeeded Arosemena prove itself unable to restore order in Ecuador and agreed on policy issues. Army and navy united to sideline the air force, whose leaders advocated a nationalist and progressive agenda. Nevertheless, the junta enacted a mild agrarian reform that notably abolished the huasipungo, a sort of indigenous serfdom. The junta alienated coastal oligarchy's support by adopting protectionist measures. In March 1966, a student and labor protest, supported by both coastal and sierran oligarchs, was violently repressed. This led to the fall of the junta that, in a telling move, handed over power to Clemente Yerovi Indaburu, a Guayaquil politician considered as the father of the banana boom. A Constituent Assembly was summoned and elected Otto Arosemena, Carlos Julio's cousin, as provisional president in November 1966. Beside of the drafting of  a new Constitution, the most important event that occurred under Arosemena's presidency was the begin of oil drilling by Texaco in Lago Agrio (Amazonian province of Sucumbíos) canton.

Presidential elections were organized in June 1968. Once more, Velasco Ibarra, recently returned from his exile, prevailed in a heavily divided race. Velasco Ibarra took 33% of the vote compared to 31% for the liberal candidate and 30.5% for former president Ponce Enríque. In the concurrently held race for vice president (since 1948, president and vice president were elected on separate ballot), the liberal candidate prevailed. With no majority in Congress, a vulnerable economic situation and a persistent student agitation, Velasco Ibarra considered resigning. He, however, got the support of the military and staged in July 1970 a coup that officially give him full powers. The reality is that the power was by now detained behind the scenes by the military who aimed to control the growing oil manna. While basically a hostage of the army, Velasco Ibarra insisted to return to legality and to organize a fair presidential election in 1972. The frontrunner in that race was Assad Bucaram, a fierce demagogue from Guayaquil running under the CFP banner, who frightened both Coastal bourgeoisie and Sierran landowners by his violent diatribes against the “oligarchy”. Also worried about the likely victory of Bucaram, the army staged a coup and, once more, ousted Velasco Ibarra and forced him to flee to Panamá in February 1972, in the so-called Carnavalazo (the coup took place during the carnival).
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Sir John Johns
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« Reply #28 on: February 10, 2013, 12:23:00 am »

Three populist figures: Velasco Ibarra, Guevara Moreno, Assad Bucaram

While generally described as a populist (he was a demagogue with extraordinary oratory skills and was the first Ecuadorian politician to use modern medias and to campaign throughout the country), Velasco Ibarra fundamentally differed from populists like Juan Perón and Getúlio Vargas in his inability (and his apparent lack of will) to build a mass party with strong roots in labor movement and civil society. He apparently founded his own party, the National Velasquist Federation (FNV), in 1960 for his penultimate attempt to win the presidency. The FNV looked like more a fan-club and a coalition of numerous and conflicting economic, social, and political interests than a real political organization. The various broad coalitions supporting successive Velasco Ibarra's candidacies lacked of ideological coherency and failed to unite themselves behind a clearly defined political project. From my understanding, politicians like Ponce Enríquez or Carlos Julio Arosemena backed Velasco in the only goal to promote their own political career. Note also that, while Velasco Ibarra backed Ponce Enríquez in the 1956 race, he almost entered in opposition to Ponce once this elected, probably with the intention to prepare the ground to his next presidential candidacy.

Velasco Ibarra also appeared unable to remove the constitutional ban on immediate presidential election and unwilling to extent the franchise to the illiterates (who were mostly of indigenous ethnicity). Velasco Ibarra also appeared to lack of a strong geographical base. He never hold a local office (like a mayoralty) and was Pichincha deputy for only one year (in 1933-1934). In his successive campaigns (if the results I found are correct; also I haven't the results for 1934 and 1940 races), he failed to capture the Pichincha province in the 1952 and 1968; in the three elections (1952, 1960, 1968) he won the Guayas province thanks probably to the support of local oligarchy. Finally, a fun fact which probably has an importance: in the four presidential elections of 1940, 1952, 1960, 1968, Velasco Ibarra won while he returned from foreign exile. Despite Velasco Ibarra's long political career, I haven't found yet a modern Ecuadorian politician claiming Velasco Ibarra's legacy.

The  Concentration of Popular Forces (CFP) and its successive leaders, Carlos Guevara Moreno and Asaad Bucaram, represented a new type of populism. Raised in Guayaquil, Guevara Moreno studied in the Sorbonne (Paris) in the 1930s where he meet writer André Maurois and communist leader Paul Vaillant-Couturier and got involved in leftist agitation. He notably wrote articles for the communist newspaper L'Humanité and later fought in Spain in the International Brigades. Once he returned to Ecuador, he allied with Velasco Ibarra and became his interior minister. By then, he had made a complete political turnaround and, in his ministerial post, he persecuted socialist and communist opponents to Velasco Ibarra. In 1949, he set up his own political party, the CFP, which is sometimes described as a fascistic movement but actually lacked of ideological consistency. From my understanding, the CFP was the first truly mass party. It established a strong political machine in Guayaquil where it appealed to the proletariat, mostly constituted of migrants from the Sierra who move to the Guayas province to find jobs. In 1952, Guevara Moreno was elected mayor of Guayaquil (previously a liberal stronghold). By now, he was perceived as a political rival by Velasco Ibarra who forced him to go into exile. By 1956, he had returned to Ecuador and ran as presidential candidate. While he finished third with 24.5% at the national level, he won the province of Guayas (52.5%) and the adjacent province of Los Ríos (43%). Guevara Moreno's star began to wane and he was superseded by Assad Bucaram as leader of the CFP. He later attempted to build a new party, the Ecuadorian Revolutionary Popular Action (APRE), with limited success.

By contrast with Velasco Ibarra, Guevara Moreno, and the Arosemena cousins who came from an educated and well-off background (the Arosemena were remotely connected to the homonymous Panamanian political family), Assad Bucaram was the son of Lebanese migrants and represented the rising power of the Lebanese families who made their fortunes in quick time. Lebanese bourgeoisie was despised by the traditional bourgeoisie who generally regarded it as a bunch of uneducated nouveaux riches who made their fortunes under dubious means. Note however that a significant share of Lebanese businessmen managed to integrate itself in the Costa oligarchy; the most illustrious example is the current mayor of Guayaquil Jaime Nebot (full name, Jaime Nebot Saadi).

Anyways, Assad Bucaram was scorned by the Ecuadorian elite for his abrasive style and coarse language. Bucaram successfully used the contempt of the oligarchy toward him as a vote-winner and, at some time, became known as el patán de noble corazón (“the boor with a noble heart”). In 1960, Bucaram was elected prefect of the province of Guayas and, two years later, mayor of Guayaquil, a post in which he immediately rewarded his followers with municipal jobs. After the fall of the military dictatorship that have forced him to flee in exile, he was elected deputy to the Constituent Assembly in 1966 and, the following year, mayor of Guayaquil for the second time. With now a strong electoral base in the economic capital of Ecuador, he returned as prefect of the province of Guayas and prepared his presidential candidacy for 1972. The military coup will ruined his presidential ambitions.

The military dictatorship (1972-1979)

Described by Velasco Ibarra as a “group of coronelitos (little colonels) inspired by the reading of Lenin and Mao”, the new military dictatorship was led by the army colonel Guillermo Rodríguez Lara. This one established what he called a revolutionary nationalist government which implemented left-wing and progressive policies, largely similar to that of his Peruvian counterpart Juan Velasco Alvarado. The military government increased the share of public participation in oil drilling and used the huge flow of oil cash to finance a policy of import substitution industrialization. Ambitious programs of industrialization were led (building of the petroleum refinery in the city of Esmeraldas; electrification of the countryside) and the state bureaucracy largely expanded. The counterpart was however the alarming raise of the foreign debt which would later plunge the economy in turmoil.

Unlike the other Latin-American dictatorships of that era, Rodríguez Lara's regime was not really oppressive. Neither political parties nor labor unions were forbidden. Chilean opponents to Pinochet were even granted political asylum. Ecuador only joined the Operation Condor in 1978 and the country never experimented a bloody repression nor a policy of state terror. Also, there were no relevant guerrilla movement, which could be a bit surprising if one considers the high level of social and student agitation in the 1960s.

Rodríguez Lara was ousted in 1976 by a military coup that put a military junta in charge of the country. The junta took measures to curb the inflation and prepared the ground for the return of the democracy. A referendum was held in 1978 and approved a new constitution.

President and vice president were elected on the same ballot. Presidential term was five years (reduced to four years from 1984). As the military got tired of repeatedly having to oust Velasco Ibarra (who was still alive), they banned presidential reelection.

Digression about the incredibly messy Ecuadorian electoral system

The new constitution instituted an unicameral Congress with two different sorts of deputies (elected by party list proportional representation; seats were appointed using the largest remainder method):
- 12 national deputies were elected through a national vote.
- 57 provincial deputies were elected in 20 multi-member constituencies corresponding to the 20 provinces.

There were many problems with this system. Firstly, parties couldn't run a joint list (also, independents couldn't run). Secondly, the population varied hugely from one province to another. The three most populous provinces,  Guayas, Pichincha, and Manabí concentrated respectively (roughly) 25%, 20%, and 10% of the total Ecuadorian population. In 1979, they have respectively 8, 6 and 5 seats. On the other hand, small Amazonian provinces (Oriente) and the Galápagos concentrated each less than 1% of the total Ecuadorian population but were bestowed one seat each. So, not only the small provinces were hugely overrepresented in Congress, but small parties had no interest to ran in these provinces and focused their efforts to win seats in the largest provinces.

Concrete example:
In the 1979 legislative elections, while the twelve registered parties ran in Guayas, in Pichincha, and in Manabí, only four parties ran for provincial deputies in Galápagos and in the Oriente. The CFP was the only party to ran candidates in every province. It won 2 of the 3 deputies of the province of El Oro province with only 32% of the valid votes and the only Napo deputy with 26%. The Democratic Left won 2 of the 3 deputies of the province of Imbabura with only 33% of the valid votes. The Social Christian Party elected one deputy in the province of Guayas where it took 7% of the valid votes.

Over the years, this system was changed countless times and became more and more complicated. In 1984, term length of national deputies was reduced from 5 to 4 years and term length of provincial deputies was reduced from 5 to 2 years. In the 1990s, reelection was permitted as well as joint lists; independents obtained the right to ran if they could form their own list and collect a required number of signatures. In 1998, national deputies were suppressed and provincial deputies' term length was extended to 4 year. That same year, the open-list system was introduced. The largest remainder method was replaced by D'Hondt method in 1998 or 2000; this last was ruled as unconstitutional in 2004 by the Supreme Court in a highly politicized move and replaced by the Imperiali method. For some reason, the Imperiali method was then replaced by the Webster method. Finally, national deputies were reintroduced in 2009.
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Sir John Johns
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« Reply #29 on: February 10, 2013, 12:25:26 am »

How it works this year

15 national deputies are elected through a national vote.

116 provincial deputies are elected in multi-member constituencies corresponding to the 24 provinces; the three most populous provinces (Guayas, Pichincha, and Manabí) are, for the first time, divided in electoral districts: Guayas (23.99 % of the total Ecuadorian voters) and Pichincha (17.78 %) are each divided in four districts. Manabí (9.44%) in divided in two districts. The constituencies were officially created to correct the malapportionment and to force parties to field candidates from the countryside. However, the North-Quito constituency (738,765 inhabitants) elected 4 deputies only one more than the Pichincha district and its 337,096 inhabitants. This last district consists in three non-contiguous parts.

Finally, 6 deputies are elected from three districts by Ecuadorians living abroad (don't know when they were introduced).

Also, before I forget, I would like to mention that Ecuadorians will also vote to renew their 5 representatives to Andean Parliament (but nobody in Ecuador seems to care about).

Deputies are elected through open list proportional representation. Panachage is allowed but candidates generally dissuade the electors to use it (they apparently tend to choose more names than the actual number of seats). National deputies seats are allocated according to the Webster's method. Provincial deputies seats and seats of deputies representing Ecuadorian expatriates are allocated using the D'Hondt method. In the last 2009 legislative election, the three types of seats were allocated according to the Webster's method. Introduction of the D'Hondt method is widely seen as a way to favor officialist candidates and to deny parliamentary representation to minor parties.

Gender parity is required on every party's candidate list and the candidates must be ordered alternatively by gender on the ballot paper. Ftr, Ruptura's transsexual candidate, Diane Rodríguez (born Luis Benedicto) occupy a spot reserved for a man.

16 and 17-years-old will vote for the first time, as well as the military and the policemen. Voting is compulsory for every citizen between 18 and 65 years old and non-compulsory for Ecuadorians living abroad, military, policemen, illiterate and disabled people. In last elections, women and men were required to vote in separate polling stations; I don't know if this provision has been changed since.

Average Ecuadorian seems to understand nothing of his voting system. This partly explains the high level of blank and null ballots cast in legislative election (respectively 17.22% and 9.56% of the total votes cast in the 2009 election of national deputies) compared to the presidential election  (6.26%/6.73%). The abstention rate was very similar: 24.27% for legislative election, 24.71% for presidential election.

A candidate (for presidential election as for legislative election) must be a member or an affiliate of a national registered political party. In order to be register a political party had to gather signatures from 1.5% of the total number of voters in the previous general election (corresponding to 157,947 signatures on national level for this election).

On last July, the whole registration process turned into a farce when it was revealed that several parties had forged hundreds of signatures. Voters discovered that they had been been registered to a political party without their consent. Most notably, Álvaro Noboa claimed that he had been register as a PAIS member (it is however important to mention that Noboa is a big AW). So, the National Electoral Council began to check all signatures only four months before the registration deadline. After the nullification of forged or duplicated signatures, some parties fell below the requisite 157,947 signatures threshold and lost time and money to collect the missing signatures. In the end, eight parties managed to keep their registration and four parties registered for the first time. Consequently, twelve parties registered this time, down from forty-two in last legislative elections. However, none of the disqualified parties were politically relevant.
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« Reply #30 on: February 10, 2013, 12:39:39 am »

The 1978-1979 presidential election

Note: it's unclear if illiterates could vote in this election; if they could, vote wasn't mandatory for them.

The natural candidate of the CFP was Asaad Bucaram. Unhappy with a possible victory of Bucaram, the military junta found a motive to disqualify Bucaram's candidacy. It introduced a provision in the Electoral Law stipulating that the parents of a presidential candidate must have been Ecuador nationals at the time of his birth. Now unable to ran, Bucaram threw his support behind his nephew by alliance, the 38-year old Jaime Roldós. This latter, a lawyer from Guayaquil, contrasted sharply with Bucaram's image as he was a rather intellectual figure with a low-profile. Bucaram made no mystery that he will de facto ruled the country if Roldós was elected. In fact, Roldós ran under the slogan “Roldós to presidency, Bucaram to power” (another slogan was La Fuerza del Cambio - The Force of the Change). Roldós' running mate was Osvaldo Hurtado, a 39 year-old political scientist from the Sierra. Hurtado was the leader of the Popular Democracy (DP), a Left Christian party founded in the 1960s by Catholic students. DP was one of the few Ecuadorian party with a strong ideological background.

The dictatorship-backed candidate was Sixto Durán Ballén, a former mayor of Quito (1970-1978). An architect from a well-off family with an accommodating personality, he was one of the founders in 1951 of the Social Christian Party (PSC), a party which described itself as a christian democrat movement. He ran with the support of the PSC and of the old Ecuadorian Conservative Party (PCE). At first, Durán Ballén attempted to build a broad anti-CFP coalition around his candidacy, but it disintegrated because of personal rivalries.

The candidate of the Ecuadorian Radical Liberal Party (PLRE), the heir of Eloy Alfaro's party (the logo of the PLRE is Alfaro's head), was at first Francisco Huerta. After his candidacy was ruled invalid on dubious grounds, he was replaced as PLRE presidential candidate by his own uncle, Raúl Clemente Huerta. A jurist from Guayaquil and a veteran politician - he ran in the 1956 presidential election when he was defeated by Camilo Ponce Enríquez – Huerta was generally considered as the candidate of the Guayaquil oligarchy. He was supported by the Ecuadorian Socialist Party (PSE). Founded in Quito in 1926, the PSE was throughout his history divided over whether allied with the Liberal Party or with the Communist Party. While it successfully build an electoral base, it failed to become a ruling party. Soon afterward, the ambitious Francisco Huerta left the party and found his own movement, the Democratic Party.

Rodrigo Borja, a lawyer from Quito, was the candidate of the Democratic Left (ID). ID was formed in 1970 by PLRE members unhappy with the alliance of their party with the president Velasco Ibarra. They were soon rejoined by members of the Socialist Party and the new party adopted a social-democrat and reformist platform. Similarly to DP, ID was a party with a strong ideological background and a reluctance to adopt a demagogical discourse.

Another breakaway of the PLRE, the Alfarist Radical Front (FRA), fielded his own candidate, Abdón Calderón. This latter, a lawyer from the Guayas province and a renown opponent to the military dictatorship, ran on an anti-corruption and populist platform.

Finally, the Ecuadorian Communist Party ran his own candidate, René Mauge, under the banner of its electoral coalition, the Popular Democratic Union (UPD). The Communist Party was founded in the 1920s but never achieved the status of a major party. With the Communist Party, the only somewhat relevant member of the UPD was the Revolutionary Socialist Party of Ecuador (PSRE), a castroist breakaway from the PSE.

The first round results were a shock for the military junta:

Jaime Roldós (CFP) 27.7%
Sixto Durán Ballén (PSC) 23.86%
Raúl Clemente Huerta (PLRE) 22.67%
Rodrigo Borja (ID) 12.01%
Abdón Calderón (FRA) 9.03%
René Mauge (UDP) 4.74%

Thanks to the CFP powerful machine in Guayas, Roldós won 50.43% in the most populous Ecuadorian province. He also managed to get strong results in Sierran provinces. Durán Ballén barely made the run-off despite the PLRE candidate's disappointing results in its past Coastal stronghold. He also probably suffered from Borja's competition in the Sierra. The ID candidate notably finished ahead in the province of Pichincha.

In panic, the military postponed several times the second round. Also, in November 1978, former presidential candidate Abdón Calderón was murdered, probably at the instigation of the interior minister. Under the pressure of Washington, the junta was forced to organize the run-off ten months after the first round.

Jaime Roldós (CFP) 68.49%
Sixto Durán Ballén (PSC) 31.51%

Roldós won in a landslide and swept all Ecuadorian provinces but one, the Sierran province of Loja which Durán Ballén won barely with 51%. In the concurrently held legislative election, the CFP won 29 deputies out of 69. ID became the second largest party in Congress with 15 seats. PCE won 10 seats while PLRE's result was disastrous (4 seats). PSC won 3 seats. DP and FRA didn't participated in the election. Despite the death in Argentine of its leader, the useless Velasquist National Federation (FNV) managed to won one seat. Assad Bucaram was elected president of the Congress with the support of the PCE and the PLRE

The Roldós presidency (1979-1981)

However, by this date, relations had become strained between Roldós and Bucaram. During the campaign, Roldós had proven he was a full-fledged politician and, once in office, refused to be Bucaram's puppet. The personal rivalry also translated on the political level. While Bucaram, now allied with the conservative and liberal parties, advocated an old-time clientelist and somewhat reactionary policy, Roldós intended to pursue a progressive agenda. The CFP soon divided between Bucaram's old guard and the young and educated followers of Roldós, those perceived as a bunch of opportunists and nicknamed the Chuchumecos by Assad Bucaram. In 1980, Roldós established his own party, People, Change and Democracy (PCD) while Bucaram turned into his nephew's fiercest enemy.

Despite Bucaram's obstructionism in Congress, Roldós launched a vast program of rural literacy program and implemented social reforms. He showed interest for indigenous language policy. He also confronted a short war with Peru over the demarcation of the border between Peru and Ecuador. Economic situation began to seriously deteriorate when Roldós and his wife died in an airplane crash on 24th May 1981. According to popular rumor, the crash was organized by the conservative oligarchy with the active support of Washington, unhappy with Roldós' advocacy of human rights in Latin America. These suspicions were reinforced when Panamanian strongman Omar Torrijos also in died in an airplane crash, two months only after Roldós' death.

Roldós is still a revered figure in Ecuador and is a bit the Ecuadorian Kennedy. One of the youngest president of Ecuador, he is perceived as a visionary statesman which renewed the politics of his country before his death in tragic circumstances. He is credited with the successful transition to democracy and his legacy is claimed by basically every politician on the left of the political spectrum. His own brother, León Roldós, his daughter, Martha Roldós, and his brother-in-law, Abdalá Bucaram, largely built their own political career on Roldós' legacy.



I hadn't intend to write on the pre-1979 period so it took me a lot of time to check whether my memory playing tricks on me. Logically, what follows will be quicker to wrote. I will write on the 1981-2007 period and then write on the remaining candidates.
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« Reply #31 on: February 10, 2013, 09:37:37 pm »

No questions, comments, or complaints?

The Hurtado Presidency (1981-1984).

After the death of Jaime Roldós, the christian democrat vice president Osvaldo Hurtado was sworn in as president. He appointed Roldós's own brother, León Roldós (PCD), as new vice president. In November of 1981, the old populist leader Assad Bucaram died. The two most important populist parties had lost their leaders within a few months and were facing turbulent times. While the CFP was plagued by internal struggles over Bucaram's succession, the PCD soon divided as León Roldós proved to be an inept politician. Jaime Roldós' brother-in-law (and Assad's nephew), Abdalá Bucaram leave the PCD and set up his own political party, the Ecuadorian Roldosist Party (PRE), and adopted a clientelist and populist policy similar to that of the CFP.

With the decay of the populist parties, Hurtado found himself unable to build a reliable parliamentary majority. As his own party, the DP, hadn't participated in the 1979 legislative elections, it had only few deputies, all of them being defectors from other parties. He consequently had to form various precarious party coalitions to govern and to reward his new unreliable allies with administrative posts. After having governed with the support of the ID and the PCD, Hurtado later formed an unreliable coalition with the CFP and the Hurtado's Democratic Party (PD). As 1984 election approached, both the CFP and the PD withdraw their support.

Under his administration, a series of characteristics, defining the Ecuadorian political system until now, appeared or became permanent:
- the fragmentation of the political system between a highly number of parties.
- the weakness of the parties and their failure to transform into mass parties and to overcome the Sierra/Costa divide
- the low party loyalty. Deputies easily defect from a party to another during their term of office.
- endless disputes between the Congress and the executive. Deputies often resorted (or threatened to resort) to the impeachment of the ministers until the abolition of this practice in 1998.
- a high electoral volatility
- an insane level of legislative violence

Hurtado's efforts to form a stable majority were undermined by the dire economic situation. This one was caused by the high debt burden, a drop in oil price, and flooding in the Costa as a result of El Niño phenomena. Hurtado renegotiated the Ecuadorian debt with the IMF and implemented austerity measures that led to social unrest.

The 1984 election

The first election where the (mostly indigenous) illiterates were required to vote.

The candidate of the conservative right was a businessman of Guayaquil, León Febres Cordero. The scion of an illustrious Ecuadorian family and a flamboyant politician, “LFC” was a PSC deputy in the Congress and became famous in that post as a fierce opponent of President Hurtado. Febres Cordero managed to unite around his candidacy a coalition of several right-wing parties, the National Reconstruction Front, which notably included the two declining PCE and PLRE. Febres Cordero's running mate, Blasco Peñaherrera Padilla, was a member of the latter party. The PSC candidate ran under a neoliberal and populist platform with the slogan Pan, Techo, y Empleo (Bread, Housing, and Jobs).

Rodrigo Borja ran again as the candidate of the ID with the support of the PCD. He appeared as the front-runner candidate on the left side of the political spectrum. His running mate was Aquiles Rigail, a PCD member and a former labour minister in Roldós administration.

After infighting, Averroes Bucaram, Assad's son, stood out as the leader of the CFP. However, as he didn't meet the age requirement (35 years old) to run the CFP fielded Ángel Duarte Valverte (not much information about him).

Other notable candidates included Jaime Hurtado of the MPD, who was the first Afro-Ecuadorian to run in a presidential race; Jaime Aspiazu, a banker and businessman from the Costa, who was the candidate of the FRA instead of the party leader, Cecilia Calderón (Abdón Calderón's daughter) who was too young to run; and Francisco Huerta who ran under the banner of his PD.

First round:

Rodrigo Borja (ID) 28.73%
León Febres Cordero (PSC) 27.2%
Ángel Duarte (CFP) 13.52%
Jaime Hurtado (MPD) 7.33%
Jaime Aspiazu (FRA) 6.78%
Francisco Huerta (PD) 6.64%
Júlio César Trujillo (DP) 4.7%
René Mauge (FADI, the new name of the UDP) 4.26%
Manuel Salgado (PSE) 0.83%

Unsurprisingly, Borja did his best results in the Sierra and the Oriente. Febres Cordero's results are more interesting: he made his best result in the province of Guayas and proved he had successfully turned the Sierra-based PSC into a Costa-based party (but with still a significant presence in the Sierra). In the legislative election, ID became the largest party in Congress with 24 seats out of 71.

The municipal election in Guayaquil was very important. The city had been won in 1978 by a TV-journalist running under the tiny APRE (Guevara Moreno's second party) who was send in jail after he bankrupted the municipality. Three populist candidates confronted each other. They were Abdalá Bucaram (PRE), running on the legacy of his brother-in-law; Olfa Záccida de Bucaram (CFP), running on the legacy of his husband, Assad Bucaram; and Cecilia Calderón (FRA), running on the legacy of his father, Abdón. Abdalá Bucaram won easily. He will used the city of Guayaquil as a political base for his future national political career.

Runoff:

León Febres Cordero (PSC) 51.54%
Rodrigo Borja (ID) 48.46%

Borja was seen as the favorite in the run-off. However, he ran a bad campaign and was trounced by Febres Cordero in the presidential debate (“Look me in the eyes when you talk to me, Mr. Borja”). Thanks to the support of the CFP and the FRA, Febres Cordero won the runoff. He won only 5 provinces out of 20: the coastal provinces of Guayas (where he took 68%), Los Ríos, Manabí, and Bolívar, and the Sierran province of Tungurahua. The 1984 election is notable because it was the only presidential election in which both a clearly right-wing candidate and a clearly left-wing candidate qualified for the runoff.
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« Reply #32 on: February 10, 2013, 09:39:50 pm »

The Febres Cordero presidency (1984-1988)

A fervent admirer of Ronald Reagan, Febres Cordero made no mystery of his intention to implement a harsh neoliberal agenda. His presidency turned into an impressive series of disasters. Despite having no majority in Congress, dominated by the ID-led Progressive Block, LFC chose to adopt a confrontational attitude. To prevent the opposition-appointed judges from taking office, he ordered the surrounding of the Supreme Court by army tanks. After several months of legislative paralysis, several deputies defected from the Progressive Block (allegedly after having been bribed by LFC) and permitted the president to constitute in 1985 a parliamentary majority uniting his own PSC, what remained of the PLRE and of the PCE, the two Costa-based populist CFP and FRA, and the various defectors. The newly elected president of the Congress, Averroes Bucaram, was soon afterward involved in a bizarre affair. A former CFP deputy attempted to shoot him during a session of the Congress and killed Bucaram's assistant. This incident could be see as anecdotal, but it was the most shocking of the many physical confrontations between Congressmen under LFC's presidency.

Political violence also occurred outside the Congress. From 1983, a small urban guerrilla group had emerged in Ecuador, the Eloy Alfaro Popular Armed Forces, generally referred as ¡Alfaro Vive, Carajo! (AVC). The group committed several hold-ups, stole Alfaro's sword in a museum, and, in August 1985, kidnapped Nahim Isaías, a banker friend of LFC who died in unclear circumstances (either killed by the guerrilla or by the police). The president brutally suppressed the guerrilla, ordering notably the use of torture. Numerous human rights violation were committed under LFC's presidency. LFC's supporters claim that the vigorous action of their champion prevented the Ecuador to follow the path of its Colombian and Peruvian neighbors. It is important to underline, however, that AVC could hardly be compared to the Shining Path or the FARC. It was a guerrilla with no roots in the countryside and whose members were divided over the recourse to armed struggle (they called to vote for Borja in the 1984 runoff). The AVC was linked to the M19, the less bloody Colombian guerrilla. On the contrary of many other Latin American countries, Ecuador experimented his worst human rights situation under a civil president and not under a military government.

Another act of political violence was the assassination in October 1984 of the head of the municipal police of Guayaquil, Merlín Arce. Mayor Abdalá Bucaram accused Jaime Toral, a politician linked to LFC. Toral was arrested the following year and charged with the kidnapping and the murder of Germán Zambrano, an aide to Bucaram. This last was, by now, LFC's archenemy. Rumors emerged that Bucaram extorted money from Guayaquil businessmen, on the cover of receiving “donations”. Fearing for his life, Bucaram fled to Panamá in September 1985. While in Panamá, he was involved in a preposterous case: Noriega's police arrested and tortured him on the ground of cocaine possession. Many believed it was a LFC's dirty trick. Anyways, it backlashed heavily as Bucaram acquired martyr status and was by now considered as LFC's biggest opponent.

The cuts of subsidies for basic food products, the reduction of the price controls and the free trade policy carried out by LFC caused social protests and growing discontent among the population. The modest improvement in the economy was annihilated by the world collapse of oil prices. In the 1986 midterm elections, while the PSC increased its number of seats, LFC lose his parliamentary majority as his tiny allies lose grounds. He suffered a major setback when his political reform (which would permit independents to run for election) was rejected by a large majority (69.5%). Despite losing 7 seats, ID remained the largest party in Congress with 17 deputies out of 70. The big winners were the leftist parties, especially the PSE whose parliamentary representation grow from 1 to 6 seats. By now, LFC faced an obstructionist Congress which harass his finance minister, the hardliner neoliberal Alberto Dahik, and finally remove him from office.

In March 1986, an air force general, Frank Vargas Pazzos accused the defense minister of corruption and organized two consecutive mutinies in order to (unsuccessfully) force him to resign. Vargas Pazzos was arrested and jailed but Congress voted his pardon. As LFC refused to enact the pardon, a group of paratroopers killed three of his bodyguards and briefly kidnapped him in January 1987 to force him to pardon Vargas Pazzos. As soon he was released, LFC escaped an impeachment vote in the Congress.

The final months of LFC in office were extremely painful. On 6 March 1987, an earthquake destroy the country's main pipeline nearly stopping oil exports during five months. With an economy in tatters, LFC had no choice but to default on debt servicing. He also renounced to any kind of neoliberal measure and increased public spending in order to reconstruct the country (and also to prepare the forthcoming elections).
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« Reply #33 on: February 10, 2013, 09:58:16 pm »

In the news:
The Electoral Council considers sanctions against PRE candidate Nelson Zavala after he once again made homophobic slurs. Zavala had previously received a warning for the same reason.

Nelson Zavala is the PRE replacement candidate and easily the worst candidate in this election. At first the PRE try to register the candidacy of its leader Abdalá Bucaram, who is lived in exile in Panamá. The Electoral Council rejected Bucaram's candidacy on the grounds that a presidential candidate has to register his candidacy on the Ecuadorian soil. As Bucaram is a wanted man in Ecuador, he renounced to run. The PRE first attempted to draft Mauricio Rodas (which at that time hadn't yet managed to get his party registered), but Rodas did not even deign to answer to the PRE. Zavala was previously considered by Gutiérrez as a possible running mate.

As I wrote above, Zavala is an evangelical pastor which run on a Jack-Chick-esque platform. He pretends to defend the “true family” and to fight against what he called the “heterophobes”. He wants to ban rock concerts, to prevent Marilyn Manson from entering in Ecuador and to censor “immoral movies”. He also promised to create a Ministry of the Poor which would implement the so-called Ama a tu prójimo (“Love one's neighbor”) program. The state press agency pretended that in 2004 he had problems because he had beaten his 13-year old son (with a radiograph to prove it).
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« Reply #34 on: February 11, 2013, 11:29:53 pm »

No reaction Sad

In the news:
The Electoral Court finally authorizes the broadcasting of one of Acosta's ad, El Reyecito y su Corte (The Petty King and his Court). The ad had been forbade by the Electoral Council because it attacks another candidate (note that the Electoral Council was faster to forbade Acosta's ad than the anti-Lasso La Feriatta).

Here the ad:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aVGKnfJGhG4

The translation of the beginning (don't understand/how to translate the continuation).

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The 1988 election

Ten candidates ran in the presidential election. The most important were Rodrigo Borja, once again ID candidate; Sixto Durán Ballén, running as the PSC candidate with the support of the PCE; Abdalá Bucaram, who was permitted to return in Ecuador, as the PRE candidate; former renegade general Frank Vargas Pazzos, who was running as the candidate of the APRE with the support of the socialists on a populist and leftist platform; and Jamil Mahuad, the candidate of the DP.

First round results:
Rodrigo Borja (ID) 24.48%
Abdalá Bucaram (PRE) 17.61%
Sixto Durán Ballén (PSC) 14.72%
Frank Vargas Pazzos (APRE) 12.63%
Jamil Mahuad (DP) 11.57%
Ángel Duarte (CFP) 7.86%
Francisco Hurtado (MPD) 5.03%
three others under 5%

The result was a shock for the PSC. While Borja, unsurprisingly, managed to win the Sierra (34% in the Pichinca province), Bucaram managed to overtake Durán Ballén in the provinces of Guayas (37% against 19%) and Los Ríos (28.6% against 15.9%). The PSC candidate was probably hurt not only by the unpopularity of the incumbent PSC president, but also by his association with Quito and the Sierra. In the Sierra, he suffered from the strong competition of Mahuad who was the second most voted candidate behind Borja. In the municipal elections, DP won the Quito mayoralty, and Elsa Bucaram (PRE), Abdalá's sister, was elected mayor of Guayaquil.

Apparently, LFC let Bucaram returned with the secret hope he will divided the left-wing vote. This was a very bad appreciation of Bucaram's strong appeal to the Costa poor and his considerable talent as a campaigner. Bucaram successfully presented himself as a martyr who will avenge the “assassination” of his brother-in-law and as the champion of the poor against the “oligarchy” (La Fuerza de los Pobres [The Force of the Poor]). A charismatic and powerful showman, Bucaram didn't hesitate to ran a histrionic campaign, singing, dancing, insulting his enemies, and doing ridiculous impersonation of them. Not to mention his trollesque mustache.

His 1988 campaign ad is a good example of Bucaram's antics and demagogy: he sang himself its “soundtrack” and used his past torture in Panamá and arrest by Ecuadorian police in a very ridiculous way.

Here the ad

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xiNOoI08-48

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Other important results: Vargas made a big score (31%) in his native Manabí and also in the Amazonian provinces of Napo and Pastaza. This is quite interesting because in the last election, Manabí was Gutiérrez's best Coastal province; the province of Napo is Gutiérrez's stronghold (he generally polls around 80% here).

In the legislative elections, ID won the strongest parliamentary representation (30 seats out of 71), the highest ever won by a party between 1979 and 2008. PRE and PSC each won 8 seats, DP 7 seats, and CFP 6 seats. Old liberal and conservative parties fell into irrelevance, as well as the PD and the FRA.

The election campaign between the two rounds was incredibly bitter and acrimonious. Bucaram successfully turn it into an insult contest, questioning the virility of his opponent and calling him a drunkard and an atheist. Consequently, Borja refused to participate in a TV-debate with Bucaram.

Second round results:
Rodrigo Borja (ID) 54%
Abdalá Bucaram (PRE) 46%

Borja's result was a bit disappointing considering the controversial nature of his opponent. Bucaram won every province of the Costa and none of the Sierra nor the Oriental or the Galápagos.

The Borja administration

Thanks to the large parliamentary representation of the ID-DP alliance in Congress, the Ecuador enjoyed legislative and political stability under the two first years of Borja in office. Borja negotiated with the AVC and the guerrilla group agreed to lay down its arms. However, because the economic situation continued to be dire, Borja was forced to implement some liberalization measures and a law that curbed the power of the trade unions. That policy angered both the PSC, which considered the reforms were too mild, and the left-wing parties, which saw Borja as a social traitor. Ecuadorian justice launched investigations into both Febres Cordero and Abdalá Bucaram into separate allegations of corruption. Bucaram fled back to Panamá.

The mid-term election was a disaster for the ID which fall from 30 to 11 seats. The PSC became the largest group in Congress and forged an alliance with the PRE, the CFP and other little parties. Averroes Bucaram (CFP) was elected president of the Congress and immediately announced that he will launched an impeachment vote against President Borja. This failed after a small party defected to Borja. Averroes Bucaram was ousted from the Congress presidency by policemen as he didn't want to give up it. The only concrete results of the PSC-PRE coalition in Congress was the drop of corruption charges against both Febres Cordero and Abdalá Bucaram (the Congress frequently intervene in justice affairs) and the return of Bucaram from his second exile in Panamá. The decision by the PSC-PRE-led majority to give up investigations on LFC and Bucaram provoke a bloody brawl in the Congress: a PRE Congressman threw an ashtray at former finance minister Dahik's head while Mahuad and another Congressman were hit by Abdalá's brother and another guy until they bled (don't know if I can post the video link of that).

The most important event of Borja administration occurred in June 1990 when thousands of indigenous simultaneously protested all across the country, demanding notably a land reform and the recognition of the indigenous rights. This marked the brutal emergence of the indigenous movement (dominated by the CONAIE) into the political arena. However, Pachakutik will only be formed in 1996. The Borja government failed to fulfill indigenous demands, while the growing of indigenous militancy frightened the economic elite. Anyways, at the end of his administration, Borja left a far better economic situation than when he came to power.
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« Reply #35 on: February 12, 2013, 07:51:21 pm »

The 1992 election

No more than twelve candidates ran in this election. The incumbent ID party nominated Raúl Baca, a Quiteño who was mayor of Guayaquil under the dictatorship and president of the Congress in the 1980s, as its candidate.

The PSC was heavily divided over the nominee of its candidate. Angered by the nomination as presidential candidate of Febres Cordero's heir apparent Jaime Nebot - a former governor and deputy for Guayas closely connected to Guayaquil's business establishment -, Sixto Durán Ballén (former mayor of Quito and PSC presidential candidate in 1978-1979 and 1988) denounced the takeover of the PSC by LFC and his camarilla and joined a newly founded party, the United Republic Party (PUR). The PUR aimed at first to become a centrist party which would appealed to both the PSC and the ID voters. However, Durán Ballén chose to allied his new party with the Conservative Party and picked Alberto Dahik, a former LFC's minister of finance and an uncompromising neoliberal, as his running mate.

A bunch of populist candidates from the Costa also ran in the election. The situation was quite surreal as Abdalá Bucaram ran as the Roldosist Party's candidate, Averroes Bucaram was the CFP nominee, León Roldós ran as the Socialist Party's candidate, and a guy named Bolívar González was designated as the candidate of the Assad Bucaram Party, a split from the CFP led by Averroes' own brother, Avicena Bucaram. Frank Vargas Pazzos once again ran as the APRE's candidate. The DP, by now a center-right party, also fielded a candidate.

First round results:

Sixto Durán Ballén (PUR) 31.88%
Jaime Nebot (PSC) 25.03%
Abdalá Bucaram (PRE) 21.96%
Raúl Baca (ID) 8.45%
Frank Vargas Pazzos (APRE) 3.16%
León Roldós (PSE) 2.58%
all others under 2%

Durán Ballén performed better in the Sierra than in the Costa. The divide between the province of Pichincha and the province of Guayas was impressive. In the first one, he took 55.2% but only 17.4% in the latter. On the contrary, Nebot won 45.1% in the Guayas province and a poor 9.5% in the Pichincha province.

Abdalá Bucaram trounced all his populist competitors and made gains in every province except in the Guayas province where he fell from 37.1% (in 1988) to 28.2%. His bad results in that province were probably explained by the PRE's disastrous mismanagement of Guayaquil. Elsa Bucaram's administration was plagued by various scandals, notably the death of several children in a stampede during a city-organized Christmas gift distribution. In the concurrently held municipal election in Guayaquil, former president Febres Cordero (PSC) crushed the PRE candidate and put an end to decades of populist control on the most populous Ecuadorian city. He will successfully modernized Guayaquil and turned the city into a PSC stronghold. Shortly after the election, Elsa Bucaram fled to Panamá to escape prosecution. Nevertheless, Abdalá Bucaram made big gains in the rest of the Costa, and made his best result in the deprived province of Esmeraldas with 43.21%. All the other populist parties were now on life support. The Democratic Left was badly hurt by its record in government and was totally annihilated in the Costa.

With the two candidates running on a very similar platform (privatizations, economic liberalization, tax cuts), the candidates' personality became the main issue. While Durán Ballén was seen as an affable politician, Nebot was criticized for his abrasive style. He had previously made the headlines when he turned mad during a session of the Congress and unleashed a torrent of insults at another congressman.

Second round results:

Sixto Durán Ballén (PUR) 57.32%
Jaime Nebot (PSC) 42.68%

Nebot was defeated in a landslide, winning only three Costa provinces (Guayas, Manabí, and Los Ríos). Durán Ballén's huge results in the Pichincha (80.77%) and Azuay (79.07%) provinces suggested that he benefited from excellent transfers from left-wing voters. He also probably made big results in the capitals of the two provincs, Quito and Cuenca. Nebot won Guayas with 65.85% and Los Ríos with 61.52%.

The Durán Ballén's presidency

An old man, Durán Ballén delegated the direction of economic policy to Alberto Dahik, probably the most active vice president in Ecuador recent history. Dahik attempted to implement an ambitious economic liberalization program aiming at curbing the inflation and reducing the deficit. This agenda was, of course, heavily opposed by social and indigenous movements. However, with no majority of its own, the PUR-PCE coalition had also to deal with the PSC. Its leader, Febres Cordero, by now the most powerful politician in Ecuador as both mayor of Guayaquil and leader of the largest party in Congress, was unwilling to support what he called the “club of traitors”. In March 1993, a landslide disaster in the Azuay province didn't help the economy to recover. A constitutional referendum was organized in 1994. Every question was passed except the one over the control of state budget by the Congress which was rejected with 83% of the valid vote. It was telling on how much the Congress was an unpopular institution (this is still the case today).

In the 1994 midterm elections, Durán Ballén suffered a major setback. PUR's parliamentary representation fell to 2 seats, while the PSC increased its representation and chose to confront the president. The PSC forged an unholy alliance with the PRE and the MPD in order to impeach Dahik for misuse of public funds. The impeachment vote failed as the PRE chose to abstain. However, few days later, the president of the Supreme Court ordered the arrest of Dahik. This latter submitted his resignation and fled to Costa Rica.

Beside of Dahik's removal, Durán Ballén faced a war with Peru (the Cenepa War), which negatively impacted the economy, and the defeat of a referendum on various questions, notably a decentralization project, the privatization of the social security, and a ban on public service strikes. By that time, the PUR was became totally irrelevant and its remains merged with the PCE (itself on life support).


Hope this is readable and useful.
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« Reply #36 on: February 13, 2013, 10:05:08 am »

Haven't managed to read through all of it yet, but I'd hate for you to think it's unappreciated.
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« Reply #37 on: February 14, 2013, 10:08:09 am »

This is excellent, please continue.
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« Reply #38 on: February 14, 2013, 10:56:11 pm »

The 1996 election

By this time, the PUR had totally disintegrated and it didn't nominate a candidate to the presidency. Once again, Jaime Nebot and Abdalá Bucaram ran for their respective parties. Despite his setback in 1992, Vargas Pazzos ran for the third time to the presidency. The christian democratic DP supported former mayor of Quito (1988-1992) Rodrigo Paz. The real novelty was the candidacy of Freddy Ehlers. A TV-journalist, Ehlers ran on a left-wing and anti-corruption platform. Himself a White, he received the support of the newly founded indigenist Pachakutik and was the first presidential candidate to advocate a multiethnic society. He was also endorsed by the ID and the PS-FA (Socialist Party-Broad Front) which was founded in 1995 by the merger of the Socialist Party and the communist FADI (Broad Front of the Left).

1st round result:
Jaime Nebot (PSC) 27.17%
Abdalá Bucaram (PRE) 26.28%
Freddy Ehlers (MCNP) 20.61%
Rodrigo Paz (DP) 13.48%
Frank Vargas Pazzos (APRE) 4.93%
all others under 4%

In the mayoral elections, LFC was reelected mayor of Guayaquil in a landslide against the PRE candidate. In the legislative elections, the PSC remained the largest party in Congress (26 seats out of 82). The PRE increased its representation from 12 to 20 seats. The DP became the third largest party (12 seats), while Pachakutik made a disappointing showing (8 seats) and the ID fell from 7 to 5 seats. Two independents (the first since the return of democracy) were elected.

The two candidates in the second round were both from the Guayas province, an unprecedented situation since the return of democracy. Nebot won the province of Guayas (46.47%) while Bucaram won all other provinces of the Costa and did best in the underprivileged provinces of Esmeraldas (55.28%) and of Los Ríos (43.89%) thanks to his clientelistic networks and his demagogical promises to considerably expand housing construction (the so-called Un Solo Toque [“in just one shot”] program). He also made inroads in the Amazonian and won the province of Pastaza with 40.64%. Ehlers won the vast part of Sierran and Amazonian provinces but made poor results in the Costa.

Afterward, the campaign became acrimonious and numerous insults were traded between the two candidates. It is generally considered that Nebot's campaign was hampered by LFC's statements about Bucaram's voters who, according to him, had been a bunch of “pimps, prostitutes, and pot-smokers”. These statements ruined Nebot's attempts to label himself as the “sane” candidate against Bucaram, the self-described “Madman” (El Loco), who spent the campaign to throw insults at his rivals and to gave some sorts of concerts with the Uruguayan rock band Los Iracundos. Bucaram's running-mate, Rosalía Arteaga was also the target of misogynistic attacks. Nevertheless, Bucaram managed to negotiate the support of several indigenous communities leaders.

2nd round result:
Abdalá Bucaram (PRE) 54.47%
Jaime Nebot (PSC) 45.53%

Bucaram won every Ecuadorian province except the province of Guayas. Interestingly, the race was very disputed in the province of Pichincha, where Bucaram won with only 50.31%.

The Bucaram presidency, an epic fail (1996-1997)

Bucaram began his presidency in August 1996 with very high approval rating of 66%. Its presidency would finished in a complete mess in February 1997; at that time, Bucaram had a record-low approval rating of 7%. There are three main reasons to Bucaram's big failure.

Bucaram's personal style. While his histrionic style and his anti-oligarchic rants helped him to win the presidency, they proved counterproductive once Bucaram was in office. Ecuadorians were quickly tired of Bucaram's countless insane antics. These ranged from the shaving of his infamous Hitler mustache on a TV-show to the release of his album El loco que ama (“The Madman who loves”) which probably includes the worst cover of Jailhouse Rock ever.

Here, Bucaram performing it live in Guayaquil (not safe for epileptics).

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pgePnGHpA5s

Beside of his new singing career, he also appointed himself president of the Guayaquil football club Barcelona S.C. and claimed he would recruited Diego Maradona.

Second (and the most important) reason: the economic policy of Bucaram was heavily criticized. After promising to put an end to the neoliberal policy of his predecessor, he betrayed his election promises and hired Domingo Cavallo to elaborate a monetary convertibility plan similar to that Cavallo had implement in Argentina. In concrete terms this meant a sharp rise in the prices of gasoline, electricity, public transport, and telephone. The opportunity and the scale of the whole plan was questioned as Ecuador never experimented hyperinflation

Finally, a major problem was the Bucaram administration's widespread corruption and nepotism. At the begin of his term, Bucaram fired numerous public servants and replaced them by his own followers (who proved themselves incompetent and corrupt). Numerous members of his cabinet were recruited among his own family or his circle of friends. Notably, Adolfo Bucaram (Abdalá's own brother) was appointed minister of social affairs; the new finance minister was Abdalá's brother-in-law; Averroes Bucaram was appointed to a minor governmental post; a childhood friend of Abdalá, Alfredo Adum, was appointed to head the major ministry of Energy (which dealt with the oil money); a friend, Álvaro Noboa, was appointed chairman of the Junta Monetaria (the Ecuadorian Central Bank). Controversy also arose with the appointment of the former rebel general Frank Vargas Pazzos as interior minister.

Consequently, an insane number of corruption scandals occurred in the six-month Bucaram presidency. Among them:
- Bucaram's sister, Elsa, was permitted to return from his exile in Panamá after the charges of corruption against her were abruptly dropped.
- Bucaram's own son, Jacobo “Jacobito”, was accused to head parallel customs and to have become a millionaire in few weeks.
- The minister of education, who had been accused of plagiarism, was also involved in the so-called Mochila escolar (schoolbag) scandal: the Ecuadorian government ordered 1 million binders from a Colombian company to be freely distributed in schools; only 3,000 were delivered and irregularities were discovered in the contract award.
- The distribution of subsidized brand of milk (the so-called Abdalact) which was declared unfit for human consumption.
- The organization of a Telethon (hosted by Bucaram himself) that part of the sums raised mysteriously vanished.
- Álvaro Noboa was accused to use his position in government to settle the succession of his father, a banana tycoon, in his favour.

Downfall

After only five months in office, Bucaram had managed to alienate every social and economic sectors in Ecuador. The traditional oligarchy was angry at Bucaram's attacks on it. The trade unions were up in arms against the economic policy while progressive intelligentsia was frighten by Bucaram's style and feared that he could made a self-coup (as Fujimori in Peru). The CONAIE and Pachakutik viewed the new ministry of indigenous affairs as an organization dedicated to expand PRE's clientelistic networks. U.S. investors complained about the numerous bribes they were forced to pay and the U.S. ambassador himself denounced the widespread corruption in Ecuador. Nationalist sectors and the military were upset by the historical visit of Bucaram in Peru (the first visit of an Ecuadorian president in this country)
and saw the president as a “traitor”.

In the end of January 1997, protests and general strikes were organized with the support of trade unions, students, indigenous movements, and business organizations. On 5 February, two million Ecuadorians demonstrated all across the country, while former presidents Hurtado, Febres Cordero, and Borja united to call to Bucaram's impeachment. The next day, a broad alliance (PSC, ID, DP, Pachakutik, MPD, FRA) voted to oust Bucaram on the grounds of “physical and mental incapacity”. Ironically, the motive of the impeachment had nothing to do with Bucaram's alleged insanity. It was the only motive that needed only an absolute majority and not a two third majority.

Things went insane after both the president of the Congress, Fabián Alarcón (FRA), and the vice president Rosalía Arteaga proclaimed themselves as the new legitimate president. On the same time, Bucaram fled to Guayaquil where he claimed he was still the president and was the victim of a coup. The military, under General Paco Moncayo (a hero of the Cenepa War), intervened directly in the political process by announcing it no longer recognized Bucaram as president. While El Loco was compelled to flee once more to Panamá, Arteaga was sworn as the first female president of Ecuador. However, as Arteaga's party had no parliamentary representation, she was forced, after two days in office, to returned as vice president while Alarcón became interim president until August 1998.

A fascinating political figure, Bucaram should not be reduced to his outrageous style and his antics. He's probably one of the most intelligent Ecuadorian politicians. He managed to build a strong political organization basically out of nothing, to be elected mayor of Guayaquil at 32, to emerge as the only serious populist candidate and to survive exiles abroad and disastrous political records.

I feel compelled to provide at least one source in English about Bucaram's crazy style:
www.independent.co.uk/news/ten-ways-to-spot-if-your-leader-is-going-loco-1277401.html


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« Reply #39 on: February 14, 2013, 11:01:12 pm »

The Alarcón presidency (1997-1998).

The son of a conservative politician, Fabian Alarcón, a Quiteño, began his political career in the center-left Democratic Party but later joined the Radical Alfarist Front (FRA), a populist Costa-based party. In the 1990s, he successfully gained control of the party, sidelined its historical leader Cecilia Calderón, and transformed into his own political vehicle with its electoral support concentrated in the Sierran province of Pichincha. By that time, the FRA was pretty irrelevant. However, thanks to his opportunism, Alarcón managed to get elected president of the Congress three times. In 1996, he was elected to that position with the support of the PRE. Six months later, he betrayed the PRE and maneuvered to get designated as Bucaram's successor as president.

Alarcón decided to drop out the Cavallo Plan and to call a referendum to approve the Bucaram's removal and the convening of a Constituent Assembly. In May 1997, Ecuadorian voters approved Bucaram's removal with 75.76% (the only province to vote against was the province of Esmeraldas). In next December, the new Constituent Assembly was elected; the PSC was still the largest party. The new constitution abolished the mid-term elections, the impeachment of the ministers by the Congress, and introduced the open-list system.

Alarcón's term was marked by the worsening economic situation, exacerbated by the floods provoked by the El Niño phenomenon and by the fall of oil prices. Numerous corruption scandals erupted to the point that Alarcón's administration was quickly regarded as equally corrupt as Bucaram's one. Notably, Cecilia Calderón accused him to have buy parliamentary support with a thousand fictitious jobs (pipones) when he was president of the Congress. One of Alarcón's presidential aid was also accused of diversion of humanitarian assistance offered for the victims of El Niño.

After leaving office, Alarcón was arrested on charges of corruption in 1999, but was freed in 2003.
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« Reply #40 on: February 15, 2013, 09:37:52 am »


I'll have to devote time this weekend to read all of this (I am sorry, but I've been logged in scarcely in the last days) but thank you in advance. Since I have similar problems to write long texts in English and most of the times I lack patience to do it, I estimate your effort in what it's worth.

We'll see what happens next Sunday (Correa's landslide, I believe). Someone describes in an article in a Spain's newspaper today the political Ecuadoran system as " caudillismo * plebiscitario ". What do you think about it?

*Caudillo means leader, political boss or tyrant.
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« Reply #41 on: February 15, 2013, 06:28:46 pm »

The 1998 election

The big favorite was Jamil Mahuad, a former mayor of Quito, and a veteran member of the christian democrat DP (he was the presidential candidate of the party in 1988 and won the highest presidential vote in the DP's history). Mahuad chose Gustavo Noboa, a prestigious academic from Guayaquil with a non-political reputation.

As Abdalá Bucaram was in exile in Panamá and as he couldn't returned as he was wanted for corruption, the PRE nominated the Guayaquil businessman Álvaro Noboa (no relation with Gustavo Noboa) as its candidate. Despite being considered as the richest man in Ecuador, Noboa labeled himself as “the candidate of the poor”. He was seen as a Bucaram's puppet and received the support of the moribund populist parties APRE and CFP. He selected the Sierran Alfredo Castillo, a former member of the communist party FADI and Marxist theorist, as his running-mate and ran on a demagogic platform (building of 200,000 housing in four years, creation of one million of jobs) with a pro-business orientation.

As former presidents were by now permitted to ran for reelection, the ID selected its historical leader Rodrigo Borja as presidential candidate.

As in 1996, Freddy Ehlers ran as the candidate of his own Citizen's Movement – New Country with the support of the CONAIE and of Pachakutik. His platform was very confuse as he was supported by both the leftist indigenous organizations and by the small-business sector of Guayaquil.

Vice-president Rosalía Arteaga ran as the candidate of his personal vehicle, the Independent Movement for an Authentic Republic (MIRA).

After having considered a third presidential candidacy, Jaime Nebot stated that the country was “ungovernable” and renounced to run; the PSC didn't field a candidate in the presidential election.

1st round results:

Jamil Mahuad (DP) 34.92%
Álvaro Noboa (PRE) 26.61%
Rodrigo Borja (ID) 16.12%
Freddy Ehlers (MCNP) 14.75%
Rosalía Arteaga (MIRA) 5.07%
María Eugenia Lima (MPD) 2.54%

Thanks to the lack of a PSC candidate, Mahuad won very similar results in the three regions. I have calculated it: Costa, 34.97%, Sierra, 35.04%, Oriente, 32.06%. In fact, he performed best in the province of Guayas (38%) than in his home turf, the province of Pichincha (37.12%).

By contrast, Noboa's results were far more regionalized: Costa, 43.12%, Sierra, 11.07%, Oriente, 24.48%. He won the province of Guayas (43.27%) but finished fourth in the province of Pichincha with a poor 7.87%. His best results were in the provinces of Esmeraldas (50.12%) and Los Ríos (49.57%). Thanks to the divide of the left-wing vote, he advanced to the runoff; he also probably got some PSC votes. He also benefited from the involvement of his wife in the humanitarian assistance to the victims of El Niño phenomenon.

Results for Borja: Costa (5.02%), Sierra (26.94%), Oriente (11.75%), best result in the province of Pichincha (33.08%); results for Ehlers: Costa (7.93%), Sierra (21%); Oriente (17.93%).

In the concurrently held legislative elections, the PSC lost his status of largest party in Congress (28 seats out of 121) to the DP (35 seats). As in the presidential election, the PRE showed a surprising resilience (24 seats) giving its disastrous record and the defection of many of its congressmen after the removal of Bucaram. The ID finished fourth with 18 seats while Pachakutik made a disappointing result with only 9 seats, only one more than in the previous Congress (note that the total number of deputies was raised from 82 to 121).

Mahuad received the support of Nebot, Borja, and Ehlers in the run-off. However, Pachakutik divided itself over the candidate that it would supported: some of its Amazonian militants chose to endorse Noboa. Mahuad campaigned on the specter of the return of Bucaram from his exile as shown by this hilarious anti-Noboa ad.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VChuQRK6doM

For his part, Noboa tried, with some successes, to distance himself from El Loco, to the great dismay of the latter.

2nd round results

Jamil Mahuad (DP) 51.17%
Álvaro Noboa (PRE) 48.83%

The results were very close and both Mahuad and Noboa claimed victory. While the electoral authorities recognized the victory of Mahuad, Noboa pretended (and still pretends) that he was the winner and that Mahuad stole the election through vote fraud. The Costa/Sierra divide reappeared as Mahuad won the Sierra with 66.12% (with strong results in the Pichincha and the Azuay provinces; respectively 73.38% and 71.22%) but made feeble gains in the Costa (37.3%), especially in the Guayas province where he took a negligible 0.25% gain between the two rounds. Noboa won the Costa vote (62.7%) and the Amazonian vote (53.23%) thanks to his strong result in the province of Sucumbíos (71.55%).

The Mahuad administration (1998-2000)

At first, Mahuad, thanks to his strong DP-PSC majority in the Congress, successfully passed a series of measures of privatization and of liberalization, a law creating a tax on capital movements, another one creating the Bono Solidario (solidarity bond, the forerunner of the BDH), and the ratification of a peace treaty with Peru ending years of territorial dispute with that country. However, things got worse as the economic situation became critical. Mahuad's administration proved unable to curb soaring inflation nor to stop the sharp fall of the national currency, the sucre, while the harsh austerity measures, the fall of world oil prices and the difficult recovery from the El Niño-induced flooding plunged many Ecuadorians into poverty. An estimated 10 percent of the population emigrated. To avoid the collapse of the whole bank system, Mahuad decreed a one-week closure of the banks and a freeze of bank accounts. This decision didn't prevented the fraudulent bankruptcy of several banks nor Ecuador from defaulting on its Brady bonds in September 1999.

While the CONAIE, the trade unions, and the left-wing parties opposed Mahuad's economic policy and organized protests and general strikes, the PSC and the Guayaquil's big business sector came into conflict with Mahuad over a prospected raise of taxes. A major scandal erupted when the banker Fernando Aspiazu, arrested for fraud, revealed that he had illegally funded Mahuad's presidential campaign. On the same time, the DP party began to divided over Mahuad's policy, with former president Osvaldo Hurtado leading the dissenting group.

In a desperate move, Mahuad announced on 9 January 2000, the abandonment of the sucre and the adoption of U.S. dollar as national currency. Strikes and indigenous protests erupted to protest the decision. On 21 January, Mahuad was ousted by a coup that brought to power a junta formed by Colonel Lucio Gutiérrez, the president of the CONAIE Antonio Vargas, and a former Supreme Court justice. Gutiérrez was a member of a group of low rank military who adhered to a nationalist and anti-oligarchic agenda and was upset by the dollarization and by the Mahuad's decision to lease the Manta Air Base (in province of Manabí) to the U.S. Army to help it to fight drug traffic in Colombia. After few hours in power, the army high command forced Gutiérrez to stand aside in favor of Defense Minister Carlos Mendoza. This latter put Gutiérrez under arrest and handed over power to vice president Gustavo Noboa. The Congress approved the removal of Mahuad and Noboa's inauguration as the new president.

The Noboa administration (2000-2003)

Despite being a non-political figure, Gustavo Noboa will proved to be one of the most effective Ecuadorian president since 1978. He kept the dollarization plan of his predecessor and successfully implemented it, thanks to the rise of the world oil prices. He skillfully granted amnesty to the putschists of the 21 January 2000, including Lucio Gutiérrez, and managed to kept the support of the military.

His term wasn't free from controversy. The construction of the Oleoducto de Crudos Pesados (Heavy Crude Oil Pipeline) triggered protests by indigenous and ecologist groups. Two successive finance ministers were forced to leave office. The first, Jorge Gallardo, resigned over allegations of irregularities when he was director of the Banco del Pacifico. His immediate successor, Carlos Julio Emanuel, who was appointed thanks to a secret deal with the PRE, was involved in a bribe scandal and resigned in June 2002 before fleeing to Panamá to escape prosecution (this turns into a running gag). Emanuel was later exonerated in 2010.

The 2000 municipal elections (now decorrelated from the general elections) saw the victory of Paco Moncayo (ID) in Quito and of Jaime Nebot (PSC) in Guayaquil after the retirement of Febres Cordero.
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« Reply #42 on: February 16, 2013, 03:21:08 pm »

Wow, this is really fascinating. Alfaro, Velasco Ibarra and the others are quite interesting characters and I don't know really very much about them but their names.

Digressions about Ecuadorian demographics
 Beside Montubio, the derogatory term of Cholo is also used to label another type of Mestizos. I don't know what this term covers exactly. Cholos seems to be rather associated with the Sierra but they are apparently also present in the Coastal province of Manabí. Cholos are considered as being supportive of Lucio Gutiérrez. I also found the term of Longo and have no idea to what it referred to.

In Peru the term cholo describes contemptuously mestizos with indigenous blood (from La Sierra). I've read often this term in Peruvian writers (Vargas Llosa, Bryce Echenique, etcetera). According to some of those novels, the Velasco Alvarado regime in Peru was regarded by the Peruvian oligarchy as a cholo regime.
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« Reply #43 on: February 16, 2013, 04:31:19 pm »

Wow. Cheesy
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« Reply #44 on: February 16, 2013, 07:25:55 pm »
« Edited: February 16, 2013, 07:49:17 pm by Sir John Johns »

The 2002 election

11 candidates ran in that election.

Álvaro Noboa was fed up with Bucaram (still in exile in Panamá) and launched his own party, the Álvaro Noboa Independent Renewal Party (PRIAN). Electoral authorities rejected the new party's name on the ground that a party can't be named after a living person and the party was renamed Institutional Renewal Party of National Action (same acronym). Hilariously, the PRE use today Abdalá Bucaram's own head as the party logo without any problems. Noboa's movement was largely formed with the support of the Noboa Group, a conglomerate founded as a banana producing company, but which by now owned also banks, the local branch of Quaker Oats, shipping activities, etc. Álvaro Noboa also funded various philanthropic activities which he shameless used to buy votes.
Here the way Noboa campaigns (also lol at his total lack of charisma):

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5BdE40UmSR0

Noboa advocated privatization, foreign investments, free trade and a business-friendly policy whilst making numerous demagogic promises. To sum up, according to Noboa, if he would be elected president, Ecuador will magically become a developed country where every inhabitant will have a car and a concrete house.

Former coup leader Lucio Gutiérrez ran under his newly found January 21 Patriotic Society Party (PSP). He received the support of the Pachakutik and of the MPD and ran on a anti-corruption and anti-oligarchic platform with strong leftist and nationalist tones. Gutiérrez described himself as a man of the center-left. His running-mate was a cardiologist from Guayaquil, Alfredo Palacio.

León Roldós leave the PS-FA to ran under the banner of his own independent party, the Citizens' Movement. He ran officially as the champion of the moderate left but was in fact the candidate of the political parties facing the threat of extinction. His motley coalition united the remnants of the populist CFP, the near-dead PCE which re-branded itself as “One New Option” (UNO), the useless PS-FA, the unpopular center-right DP, the Ehlers's MCNP (without Ehlers who managed to get elected to the useless Andean Parliament in 2002), and a small “liberal-radical” group named Fuerza Ecuador.

Rodrigo Borja ran for the fifth time as the ID candidate.

The PSC nominated its parliamentary leader Xavier Neira, a close ally and former minister of Febres Cordero, as its candidate. In the end of the 1980s Neira had spent 18 months in exile in Miami after his indictment in an embezzlement case. He has been expelled from the PSC around 2009 for another case of corruption.

The PRE nominated Abdalá Bucaram's own brother, Jacobo Bucaram, who had achieved fame in 1990 by punching Jamil Mahuad during a session of the Congress. His running-mate was Frank Vargas Pazzos whose party had by that time disappeared. The PRE's ad (which apparently date from then) was quite something

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yQRxn1G6WXo

The text in the end (roughly translated): "Abdalá Bucaram's legal defense demands to the Ecuadorian political class his immediate return so he could save the poor of our fatherland".

Other notable candidates includes former president Osvaldo Hurtado, who ran under the banner of his newly founded Solidarity Fatherland Movement, and the former president of the CONAIE Antonio Vargas, who became the first indigenous candidate. He was supported by the indigenous evangelist Amauta Jatari (the forerunner of Amauta Yuyay).

1st round results:
Lucio Gutiérrez (PSP) 20.64%
Álvaro Noboa (PRIAN) 17.39%
León Roldós (MC) 15.4%
Rodrigo Borja (ID) 13.97%
Xavier Neira (PSC) 12.11%
Jacobo Bucaram (PRE) 11.92%
Jacinto Velásquez ("Independent Social Transformation") 3.71%
all others under 2%

While polls predicted a runoff between Noboa and Borja, Gutiérrez finished in a surprising first place. He had managed to win 49.8% of the Amazonian voting (thanks to his excellent result, 76.06%, in the province of Napo, where he was raised) and arrived ahead the six Amazonian provinces. He took 27.78% of the voting in the Sierra, where he finished ahead in 7 out of 10 provinces, and won a decent 11.63% of the vote of the Costa (he made his worst result in the province of Manabí, with only 6.35%).

Noboa won only two provinces (Manabí and the Sierran province of Carchi) but went into the run-off as his vote was relatively homogeneous throughout the country (i.e. Noboa's voting was the second less regionalized of the big candidates' voting). He won respectively 12.85%, 21.86%, and 15.49% of the voting of the Sierra, the Costa, and the Oriente.

Roldós' voting was very homogeneous compared to other candidates (S: 14.26%, C: 17.11%, O: 7.25%). He however failed to win a single province; his best result was in the Sierran province of Loja where he took 23.11%.

Borja's voting was heavily concentrated in the Sierra where he won 24.04% of the voting. He performed best in the provinces of Azuay (35.35%) and Pichincha (30%), the two only provinces he won, which suggested that he made his best results in urban areas (Quito and Cuenca). His results in the Costa (4.76%) and in the Oriente (7.48%) were horrible.

Neira's voting was basically the exact opposite of Borja's one: S: 5.19%; C: 19.37%; O: 3.92%. The PSC candidate won a single province, the province of Guayas, where he took 25.61%, a disappointing result. He suffered from the competition from both Noboa and Bucaram.

Bucaram's voting was: S: 4.75%; C: 18.95%; O: 10.15%. His best result was in the province of Esmeraldas (35.4%), where he suffered from the competition from both Noboa and Roldós. The province turned into a battlefield between the PRE and the PRIAN, with the MPD making inroads thanks to the division of the populist vote.

The legislative election results were very different. The PSC resumed its status of largest party with 24 deputies out of 100; the PRE and the ID had respectively 15 and 13 deputies, while the PRIAN was the fourth largest party in Congress with 10 deputies. Gutiérrez's PSP had only two deputies. Note that it's very difficult to provide the exact number of deputies for each party as there were several deputies elected on joint list, and as deputies easily jumped from party to party in the 2002-2006 legislature.

The campaign between the two rounds was, as usually, very tough. Noboa depicted Gutiérrez as a Communist who would turned Ecuador into a vassal of Venezuela. Gutiérrez himself attempted to moderate his discourse but relayed (apparently serious) accusations that children were exploited in Noboa's banana plantations.

2nd round results:
Lucio Gutiérrez (PSP) 54.79%
Álvaro Noboa (PRIAN) 45.21%

Noboa was crushed and won only four provinces (Guayas, Manabí, Esmeraldas, and Los Ríos), all in the Costa. He won this region with 63% of the voting and made his best result in the provinces of Guayas (67.47%) and Manabí (67.46%) where he probably benefited from excellent transfers from the PSC. Gutiérrez swept every provinces of the Sierra and the Oriente and also won the coastal province of El Oro (61.81%) and the Gálapagos (50.22%). With the exception of these latter province and of the province of Carchi he won with 56.39%, he won all other provinces with results over 60%. He won the Sierra with 73.13% and the Oriente with 76.59%. He managed to win his home-turf of Napo with 91.31% (Noboa only gained 1.19% here between the two rounds), the province of Azuay with 78.09%, and the province of Pichincha with 73.56%.
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« Reply #45 on: February 16, 2013, 07:40:36 pm »

The Gutiérrez administration (2003-2005)

Note: by now, the Ecuadorian political scene became an indescribable mess with nonsensical alliances, dirty tricks, and insane personal vendettas. There are many things I don't understand (notably the MPD flips-flops). Also nobody seems to care about respecting constitutional law.

The new president, who was sworn in January 2003, didn't enjoyed a majority in the Congress as his PSP-MPD-Pachakutik coalition had theoretically 20 seats out of 100. The PSC, ID, PRIAN, and DP united to elect an ID-member as president of the Congress. At this time, the PSC was lead from Guayaquil by its parliamentary leader former president León Febres Cordero (despite the fact he practically never sat in Parliament, under the pretext that Quito's altitude was bad for his health). LFC committed his party to a personal vendetta against Gustavo Noboa. He accused the former president of mishandling Ecuador's foreign debt and said he will pursued him like a hungry dog (como perro con hambre). I don't really understand LFC's motives but the old conservative leader forced the judicial authorities to prosecute Noboa as a matter of urgency. Noboa quickly fled to Dominican Republic in July 2003.

Meanwhile, Gutiérrez quickly betrayed his electoral promises. He reached an agreement with the IMF over the implement of austerity measures and endorsed a free trade and pro-U.S. policy, calling himself the best friend and the best ally of the United States. In July 2003, the MPD and Pachakutik leave the government and entered in opposition to Gutiérrez. Beside of ideological considerations, Pachakutik was also angered with Gutiérrez's attempts to build his own political base in the indigenous countryside and now saw him as a political competitor. Things went worse when the leader of the CONAIE Leonidas Iza survived an assassination attempt, allegedly sponsored by Gutiérrez's administration. In May 2004, Gutiérrez annoyed Pachakutik even more by appointing Antonio Vargas as minister of Social Affairs. Vargas was seen by Pachakutik as a traitor as he left the party to join Amauta Jatari.

Then, Gutiérrez allied with the PSC to push his liberalization agenda. However, the PSC was quickly fed up with Gutiérrez to the point where LFC called to the removal of the president. LFC pretended that Gutiérrez's brother-in-law, Napoleón Villa (a retired police colonel who wielded a great deal of power from behind the scenes), was conspiring to kill him. The real motives of the PSC were apparently disagreements over who would benefited from the privatizations. The ID was also unhappy with the widespread corruption and nepotism in Gutiérrez's administration and united with the PSC and Pachakutik to get rid of Gutiérrez.

The feud between Gutiérrez and his opponents had repercussions on electoral and judicial authorities as a provision of the Constitution stated that the members of the Constitutional Tribunal (TC) should be appointed from lists nominated by the largest political parties. On February 2004, the PSC-dominated TC ruled out the D'Hondt method as unconstitutional. Then the PSC and the ID forced the adoption of the Imperiali method in Congress. This was largely seen as a means for the PSC to improve its representation in the October 2004 local elections and to annoy Gutiérrez whose party was promised to horrible results. Indeed, the PSP suffered disastrous results in the local elections, while the ID and the PSC keep their strongholds (respectively Quito and Cuenca, and Guayaquil).

On the begin of November 2004, a broad coalition of the PSC, Pachakutik, the ID, and the MPD attempted to impeach Gutiérrez, but failed to reach the required majority as several deputies defected.

Few days later, Gutiérrez set up his own nonsensical coalition grouping his tiny PSP, the PRIAN, the PRE, the DP, the officially far-leftist PS-FA, the CFP and its only deputy, the MPD (which no longer wanted to remove Gutiérrez; don't ask me why), and various defectors. The new majority immediately removed (illegally) members  of the TC and of the Supreme Electoral Court and (illegally) appointed its followers instead (the so-called Pichicorte). In January 2005, the ID president of the Congress was also (illegally?) removed and replaced by a guy from the PRE during a session which was boycotted by the opposition.

The price to be paid for the PRE support to Gutiérrez was the return of Abdalá Bucaram from his exile in Panamá. The newly appointed TC (almost surely illegally) drop all charges against Bucaram (and also against Dahik – still in exile in Costa Rica since 1995 -, and against Gustavo Noboa). On 2nd April 2005, Abdalá Bucaram made a triumphant return to Guayaquil, called himself as mad as ever, and announced his intention to run in the next presidential election. Dahik and Noboa made a more discreet return.

By that time, the situation was chaotic. Demonstrations and counter-demonstrations have erupted. However, it seems that the return of the very unpopular Bucaram wiped out any hope for Gutiérrez to remain in power. Huge protests were organized in Quito and Guayaquil by the so-called forajidos, with the active support of the mayors Paco Moncayo (ID) and Jaime Nebot (PSC). Gutiérrez lost the support of the military and was finally (and illegally) removed by the Ecuadorian Congress on the grounds of “abandonment of the position”. The ousted president sought asylum in Brazil embassy in Quito. Meanwhile, as the Congress nullified the resolutions of the Pichicorte, Bucaram returned to Panamá after an epic Anabasis in which he escaped murder by “civilians armed by the oligarchy”. For his part, Dahik managed to escape to Costa Rica; he was later pardoned by Rafael Correa in a very controversial move. Gustavo Noboa failed to flee the country and was jailed. He was later amnestied by Correa despite the opposition of Alberto Acosta (by that time president of the Constituent Assembly).
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Famous Mortimer
WillipsBrighton
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« Reply #46 on: February 16, 2013, 09:08:03 pm »
« Edited: February 16, 2013, 09:10:33 pm by WillipsBrighton »

Great fun reading your stuff but I'm going to try to condense it all into one paragraph. Tell me if you think this is a fair summary:

In the beginning there were two blocs in Ecuadorian politics, the Liberals in Guayaquil and on the coast and the Conservatives in Quito and in the interior. Both blocs have basically remained although the parties that represent them have shifted around. The Liberals were pro-business, free-marketers. Guayaquil and coast have more or less retained that ideology. The interior of the country is weirder. If you want to sum up all the different political movements from that region, the best you could probably do is to call them "illiberal." The original Conservative Party were pro-military, pro-church statists. In the middle of the twentieth century, the more First World style conservatives broke away from the Conservative Party to establish the Christian Social Party. Quickly, however, this party was embraced by former Liberals on the coast, who, again, had the same basic pro-business ideology. The mainland was then represented by a number of different movements, Velasco Ibarra and his supporters, various Falangist and quasi fascist parties, the vaguely populist CFP, and then in the 80s, the Democratic Left. For a while in the 80s it looked like Ecuador might develop into a more or less normal European style political system with the Christian democratic Social Christian Party on the right and the SI affiliated Democratic Left on the opposite side of the spectrum. However, Ecuador is still too poor for any party to remain popular after serving a term in office, so both of those parties largely collapsed. They still maintain a base among urban professionals in home cities of Guayaquil and Quito but most of the population moved on to flashier, more bombastic parties. The Social Christians split and the interior of the country threw their support to party dissident Sixto Durán Ballén. Of course, although he was a dissident conservative, he was still a conservative, and when he governed like one, his base totally evaporated. Since then, it's been a total clusterf--f, with the coast being represented by PRAIN, Gutierrez (for lack of anyone else), and now CREO. While the interior of the country was represented by  Bucaram (for lack of anyone else), the DP, Gutierrez, and now Correa. The end result being that the coast is right-wing and the interior is left-wing, which is amusing because that's the opposite of the way it started, although Ecuador didn't really change, just what was considered left and right did.
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« Reply #47 on: February 17, 2013, 12:14:57 am »

Sorry, I think there are too much oversimplifications and some mistakes.

I probably cannot emphasis enough on the fact that illiterates couldn't vote before the 1970s. The elections between 1948 and 1968 concerned only a minority of the population. In 1968, if Wikipedia is correct, there were 1,200,000 electors for a population of 5,650,000 inhabitants. Arguably, the litterate population was concentrated in the big cities (Guayaquil, Quito, Cuenca). No conclusion can be drawn with regard to indigenous- and black-populated areas.
And before 1948, elections were rigged.

The Costa/Sierra divide is a bit caricaturated (I probably also fall into this trap). There is clearly a geographical, demographical, and economical reality behind the divide. But the two areas are far from being homogeneous: the urban Quito don't vote the same as the indigenous in the poor communities of the Chimborazo. The province of Esmeraldas with its poor and marginalized populations is a favorable ground for populist parties with strong anti-elite discourse, while the inhabitants of the affluent areas of Guayaquil preferred pro-business policies. Now slums have been more or less suppressed from Guayaquil, but they clearly not voted the same as the Guayaquil waterfront.

The interior of the country is weirder. If you want to sum up all the different political movements from that region, the best you could probably do is to call them "illiberal." The original Conservative Party were pro-military, pro-church statists.

True political parties with some kind of ideology emerged only in the 1920s. The main division between the Conservatives and the Liberals was over the economic policy (protectionism vs. free trade). I'm not sure that Conservatives were more statist than the Liberals. While the latter elaborated the first social laws, the first delegated to a private organization the education policy. As I stated above, illiterates couldn't vote so the Conservatives represented only the urban elite and the rich landowners.

In the middle of the twentieth century, the more First World style conservatives broke away from the Conservative Party to establish the Christian Social Party. Quickly After three decades, however, this party was embraced by former Liberals on the coast, who, again, had the same basic pro-business ideology. the Guayaquil businessmen chose to support the PSC rather than the moribund Liberal Party which failed to adapt to the end of the "limited" democracy

FYP

I have not that much information about the Ecuadorian politics before the 1970s, so labelling the old PSC as a First World style party looks like a bit audacious (especially, if you take in account the fact that elections concerned only a minority). Also, both Liberals and PSC advocated a pro-business policy because there were/are parties dominated by businessmen. Ideology has generally nothing to do with that. Then, there is a second fact I must insist upon: Ecuadorian parties were and are still largely disconnected from the civil society. This partly explains the insane level of political volatility. Even PAIS looks like more a party of notables rather than a true mass party.

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After some research, Velasco Ibarra's support was mostly concentrated in the Guayas (so the coast). The fascism was never really a relevant ideology in Ecuador and couldn't develop in an environment where the "lumpen-proletariat" can't vote nor in a country where local identities were more important than the national identity. The fascistic (and not fascist) ARNE ran alone in the presidential election of 1968 and won only 3.75%. So fascist influence was negligible. I only mentioned the ARNE because it supported Velasco Ibarra; this illustrated how this last didn't care about ideology.

The CFP was a Costa-based party. It only won big in Sierra in 1978-1979 because other parties were either too much linked to the dictatorship or were unable to adapt to the extension of voting rights. As a arch-populist party which actively seek support from the poor sectors of Guayaquil and built a strong machine, it was probably advantaged over the other "populist" (personalist was probably a better definition of the Velasquist) and the elitist Conservative and Liberal parties.

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PSC won thanks to the temporary collapse of the populism caused by the consecutive deaths of Jaime Roldós and Assad Bucaram. Under Febres Cordero, it took a very populist tone and I wouln't compare it to European conservative parties.

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Guayaquil was a populist stronghold from the 1950s until 1992. The PSC base in the city wasn't enough strong to ensure the control of the municipality.

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Durán Ballén was elected thanks to the collapse of the ID and the divisions of the DP and because his rival was too heavily associated to Guayaquil. He left the PSC's strong machine and allied with the declining PCE and hadn't any true political machine behind him.

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Gutiérrez was heavily associated with the Amazonian and the Sierra and his big problem is the fact that he failed to make inroads in the Costa (the colour of his skin doesn't help here). I strongly disagree with the "for lack of anyone else". Gutiérrez is still very popular in the Amazonia and the poor rural areas of the Sierra and embodied the aspirations of these areas to be taken into account by the traditional political class. His party managed to near continuously progressed after it was in charge, a true exploit.

Bucaram's support was concentrated in the coast. While he achieved some success in winning votes in the Sierra and in the Oriente, his party is virtually dead in these two regions.

The big thing to follow is the result of Correa in the province of Guayas. In 2009, he won 44.62%, his weakest result in a coastal province. If polls predicted correctly, he should made important gains and have a best result here than in the traditional left-wing strongholds of the Azuay and the Pichincha.

Correa has received the support of the center-right prefect of Guayas, Jimmy Jairala. A former member of the PRE, Jairala had defeated Correa's own sister in 2009 for the prefectural election. He was then supported by Jaime Nebot. Correa and Jairala had apparently made a deal. Jairala supported Correa and his party in the upcoming election and Correa will support Jairala in his (possible) attempt to run for mayor of Guayaquil in 2014.

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Sir John Johns
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« Reply #48 on: February 17, 2013, 01:36:10 am »

Some interesting links:

The website of the incompetent Electoral council on the 2009 results is down (404 error). Some weeks ago, the results of the 2011 Consulta could no longer been accessed.

Anyways, maps of the 2011 Consulta on parochial level

http://www.campusvirtual.uasb.edu.ec/uisa/index.php?view=article&catid=63%3Amapas-electorales-ecuador&id=115%3Aconsulta-y-referendum-2011&option=com_content&Itemid=102

There are other maps on the site, notably maps of density population, percentage of indigenous and Afro-Ecuatorian population (on parochial level). Data is a bit old (2001).

http://www.campusvirtual.uasb.edu.ec/uisa/index.php?view=article&catid=62%3Amapas-sociales-ecuador&id=57%3Apoblacion&option=com_content&Itemid=101

The site of the INEC (National Institute of Statistics and Census) have many stuff:

http://www.inec.gob.ec/estadisticas/

Results of the 2010 Census can be found here (what is lacking the most is statistic on religious affiliation)
http://redatam.inec.gob.ec/cgibin/RpWebEngine.exe/PortalAction?&MODE=MAIN&BASE=CPV2010&MAIN=WebServerMain.inl


Maps of administrative divisions in 2011 (nothing more recent) in jpg and shapefile (don't know how copyright works)
http://www.inec.gob.ec/estadisticas/?option=com_content&view=article&id=299

The website of the newspaper Hoy has the results of the presidential election by province and the composition of Congress since 1978. Note that there were many errors.
http://www.hoy.com.ec/votebienec/estadisticas.html

El Comercio has interesting profiles (in Spanish) of the eight candidates (see Perfiles on the right side of the page)
http://www.elcomercio.com/elecciones2013/

The CIDOB have very long biographies of every presidents since 1988 and also a biography of Guillermo Lasso (in Spanish).
http://www.cidob.org/es/documentacion/biografias_lideres_politicos/%28filtro%29/pais



Time for electoral propaganda:

Correa's ad, "the Bicycle". Quite good.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7c-bQmKGsro

Álvaro Noboa's crappy ad
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fmZinFj-WAc

Nelson Zavala's creepy ad, "the Truth"
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=17evgwacHg4

Abdalá Bucaram has made an ad with "Lionel Messi" to support Zavala called "I don't know". As usually with El Loco, this is totally surrealist. He denounces various plagiarism and corruption scandals. Notably, the head of the Central Bank, Pedro Delgado (Correa's own cousin) has been accused of faking his economic diploma. After supporting him, Correa abruptly drop him and called him a "traitor". Delgado fled to Miami.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Yvqr9aR5FRM

Rodas' spot, "New is best" (it was forbidden because it questioned the independence of the incompent Electoral Council)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ynpptECMAfQ

Norman Wray's artsy spot
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=L632FtLf1bI

As electoral signs of Ruptura were scribbled (mustache was added to one female candidate's head), the party chose to reply with self-mockery.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KHj1XBpFoAQ

Filmaker Sebastián Cordero made two short films to support Ruptura (too much clever for the average voter)

The Cave
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tQspU3mQfN8

The Cake (much more funny)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qG_qUScLEiM

Lasso's ad are boring and uninteresting. I didn't find any recent ad of Lucio Gutiérrez.
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Sir John Johns
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« Reply #49 on: February 17, 2013, 11:49:23 am »

The 2006 election

I'll skip the presidency of Alfredo Palacio, as he was a weak president. Under his short term the political parties concentrated themselves on the election preparation and hadn't time to lose to try to impeach Palacio. A record number of 13 candidates ran in this election.

León Roldós ran under the banner of his own new political party, Ethics and Democracy Network (RED) on a moderate left platform. He was supported by the ID and was considered as the favorite. His running-mate was Ramiro González, the incumbent prefect of Pichincha who played an important role in the fall of Gutiérrez by helping the organization of protests.

Thanks to an odd agreement with the PSC, Lucio Gutiérrez was cleared of all charges against him. However, he wasn't permitted to run for the presidential election and designed Gilmar Gutiérrez, his own brother, as the PSP candidate. Negotiations with the PRIAN and the PRE over a joint presidential candidacy failed and the three parties ran separately.

Álvaro Noboa once again ran under his personal vehicle, the PRIAN. His campaign took a messianic turn, as he proclaimed himself the “hero of God”. Catholic Church accused him of invoking God to heal sick voters. And, of course, the vote-buying continued to be widely used by Alvarito.

The PSC chose the attractive Barbie-like Cynthia Viteri as its candidate. She was a far more consensual figure than old bigwigs Febres Cordero and Jaime Nebot. She ran as the first woman with a real chance to win the presidency. However, there were cracks in the PSC and a growing opposition between LFC and Nebot. This latter had disagreed with the removal of Gutiérrez but, nevertheless, followed the orders of the former president.

A former economy minister in Palacio's government, Rafael Correa ran on a strong anti-establishment, anti-U.S., and very leftist platform. He was supported by his own tiny movement, the Alliance Proud and Sovereign Fatherland (Alliance PAIS, or AP), and by the PS-FA whose was by now anti-Gutiérrez. PAIS didn't field candidates in the concurrently held legislative election as Correa had previously stated that he will convene a Constituent Assembly. Correa's campaign was very arrogant as the candidate claimed he will be elected by the first round. Correa's running-mate was Lenín Moreno, who was apparently chosen only because he was a disabled man. Confined into a wheel chair since a physical aggression, Moreno is an advocate of the laugh therapy and the author of several books of jokes. He will prove to be an excellent and hugely popular vice-president.

After the disaster of the alliance with Gutiérrez, Pachakutik chose to field its own candidate, Luis Macas, the president of the CONAIE. Many inside the party opposed the decision to run alone and the ethnicist turn taken by the party leadership. Non indigenous leaders leave the party and chose to support either Correa or Roldós. Surprisingly, the “traitor” Antonio Vargas was reinstated into the party after a cleansing ceremony and designated as a candidate to the legislative election.

As its Líder Máximo was still in exile in Panamá, the PRE fielded its own candidate, Fernando Rosero, a corrupt old-fashioned politician. Marco Proaño, another corrupt and old-fashioned politician of the PRE, decided to leave it and to launch its own party, the Movement for the Democratic Vindication (MRD). He received the support of the liberation theologist Alberto Luna Tobar. The MPD and the CFP also fielded their own candidate.

1st round results:

Álvaro Noboa (PRIAN) 26.83%
Rafael Correa (PAIS) 22.84%
Gilmar Gutiérrez (PSP) 17.42%
León Roldós (RED) 14.84%
Cynthia Viteri (PSC) 9.63%
Luis Macas (PK) 2.19%
Fernando Rosero (PRE) 2.08%
Marco Proaño (MRD) 1.42%
Luis Villacís (MPD) 1.33%
all others under the 1%

The polls epically failed as they generally predicted a Correa/Roldós run-off. Their big mistake was the under-evaluation of the Gutiérrez voting. Noboa finished ahead in three coastal provinces (Guayas, Manabí, and Esmeraldas) and in the Sierran province of the Carchi. Correa won four Sierran provinces (notably the left-wing strongholds of the Pichincha and the Azuay), and the coastal province of El Oro. All other provinces were win by Gutiérrez who made big gains in the provinces of Bolívar (48.43%) and Los Ríos (45.57%). This proved that not only the PSP candidate was still hegemonic in the Amazonian provinces (75% in the Napo, 61.13% in the Orellana, 51.92% in the Sucumbíos) but that he was able to make inroads in a mostly non-indigenous province like Los Ríos (in 2010, 0.64% of indigenous people, but also 35.05% of Montubios, the highest concentration in Ecuador). The PSP resilience was one of the biggest surprise of the election. The other surprise was the horrible result of the PSC, whose candidate failed to win a single province and finished in a shocking 3rd position in the province of Guayas, behind Noboa and Correa. More generally, traditional parties (PK, PRE, MPD, CFP) suffered heavy losses.

The legislative election was also marked by the reject of traditional parties. The PRIAN became the largest party in Congress with 27 seats out of 101, it was followed by the PSP which make huge gains and won 23 seats. The PSC, ID, and PRE lost grounds while the CFP lost its parliamentary representation.

Noboa was considered as the probable winner of the second round. However, he made a poor campaign and proved, once more, he is a poor politician. He was probably hurt by the talks between the PRIAN and the PSP to form the new parliamentary majority. PSP's number one demand was the arrest of the “usurper” Alfredo Palacios. Ecuadorian voters were probably tired of the whole succession of politically-motivated trials.

2nd round results:

Rafael Correa (PAIS) 56.67%
Álvaro Noboa (PRIAN) 43.33%

Noboa only won the coastal provinces of Manabí (62.17%), Guayas (58.28%), and Esmeraldas (52.36%), and the vote of Ecuadorians abroad (53.93%).
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