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Lima, April 4,
Everywhere you go you are greeted by the smiling faces of the 5 viable presidential candidates looking down upon you from a forest of billboards along with a plethora of congressional aspirants. Ollanta Humala, bouyed by a huge injection of petrodollars sent to his campaign by his mentor, the tyrant of Venezuela,Hugo Chávez is in first place in the polls. This will assure him a spot in the final election which will take place 2 months after the first round on the 10th of April.
Four centrists vie to be his opponent: Former president Alejandro Toledo,Congresswoman Keiko Sofía Fujimori, Princeton economist Pedro Pablo Kuczynski and former Lima mayor Luis Casteñeda. The debate yesterday on national television all but eliminated Casteñeda. The other 3 all have a chance,but no one appears to have grabbed an advantage in the debate. Keiko Fujimori did score some points by being very well prepared and was willing to stand up for her father, the disgraced ex-president Alberto Fujimori who is in jail. This seems to go over well with the Peruvian electorate. Kuczynski, better known as PPK showed that he is very able to handle the numbers and prepare solutions for the economy. Toledo declared that what he did well before ,he would do better now. Of course, the Chavista,Ollanta Humalla played the moderate, denying that he would control the press and nationalize businesses and swore that he was against reelection of the president. Those of us in the know laughed at the obvious: This man is a wolf in sheep´s clothing if there ever was one.At the moment the advantage for the other runoff spot goes to Keiko,the only woman in the race.(Perú has never elected a woman, but Chile,Argentina,Brazil and Costa Rica have.)
In Perú the vote is obligatory and the actual president,Alan García, who defeated Humala by 5.24% 5 years ago is not permitted to intervene in the election of his succesor. His party(APRA) does not have a presidential candidate, as their candidate quit when it was too late to name a substitute.
If Humala wins in Perú it would be a huge victory for Hugo Chávez as his puppet,Humala would become a sort of viceroy for him on the style of Bolivia´s Evo Morales.The anti-americanism of Humala´s so-called Nationalist party along with Patría Roja, Sutep and other extremist marxist groups will color his government´s every act and the narcos will take heart. While Obama fiddles with Libya ,Perú can burn.If the supporters of the other 3 candiates will rally round whichever of them opposes Humala, then the leftist will lose, if not, Chávez wins and Perú and the USA lose big .