Socialists Accelerate Voter Intimidation in Venezuela

Venezuela’s president admitted to identifying those who voted against him this past election. In a recent speech to the public, Nicolas Maduro singled out those who failed to vote for him as Hugo Chavez’s hand picked successor, after having voted for Chavez in previous elections.

“We have identified the 900.000 compatriots with IDs and all” said Maduro to the public, “which meant that the gap was smaller [in the last election], when the gap could have been good.”

The public admission by Venezuela’s president that a list of opposition voters is being compiled, is certainly damaging to Venezuela’s democratic institutions by any standard, but is also worrying as a continuation of Chavez’s infamous “Tacon List,” in which the names signatories were systematically compiled from a 2004 referendum against Chavez.

Anyone on the list was essentially blackballed from government programs, and many simply fled the country.

Maduro, took over after 14 years of Hugo Chavez’s self styled “Bolivarian revolution” which he described as “Socialism of the 21st Century.”

Chavez faced a strengthened opposition in 2012 led by Henrique Capriles, after more than a decade of rule under Chavez’s “Bolivarian revolution,” had resulted in a downward spiral of increased crime, corruption, and a struggling economy.

Many questioned the results of the 2012 election, and the 2013 special election because of concerns of voting irregularities, intimidation, and lack of transparency.

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