[Marxism] The Fraud claims of the Venezuelan opposition [Venezuelanalysis]

michael a. lebowitz mlebowit at sfu.ca
Wed Apr 17 09:47:30 MDT 2013


  Capriles Falsifies Evidence in Order to Claim Fraud in Venezuela's
  Elections

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Maracaibo, April 17^th , 2013 (Venezuelanalysis.com) -- Opposition 
leader Henrique Capriles has given falsified evidence to support his 
claims that there was fraud in Venezuela's presidential elections on Sunday.

At a press conference on Tuesday, the opposition candidate listed 
several examples that he claimed were evidence of "irregularities" in 
the electoral process and in the vote count, and presented a series of 
slides 
<http://venezuelasomostodos.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/04/Incidencias-del-proceso-electoral-14A.pdf> 
to national and international media.

However, several of the examples given by Capriles as evidence of fraud 
are clearly false, as can be seen by consulting the results on the 
National Electoral Council's (CNE) website <http://www.cne.gov.ve>.

As one example, Capriles listed three separate voting centers in which 
he claimed Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro had gotten much higher 
results than Hugo Chavez had gotten in the previous presidential elections.

Capriles claimed that this was implausible, since overall Maduro did not 
get as many total votes as Chavez.

"In one voting center in Yaracuy, Maduro got 1000 percent more votes 
than Chavez did. How can anyone believe that?" he said.

However, the results from last year's election show that the three 
voting centers that Capriles gave as examples were cases in which all 
the votes from that center had not yet been registered in 2012's results 
when the election was called for Chavez, leading to an extremely low 
vote count from those centers for both candidates.

In the Yaracuy voting center 
<http://www.cne.gob.ve/resultado_presidencial_2012/pp/0/reg_201402017.html>, 
for example, a total of only 9 votes out of 75 were registered in 2012's 
elections, 7 for Hugo Chavez and 2 votes for Henrique Capriles.

However, on Sunday all the votes from this center 
<http://www.cne.gob.ve/resultado_presidencial_2013/pp/0/reg_201402017.html> 
were registered before the election was called, leading to 73 votes for 
Nicolas Maduro, and only 6 votes for Henrique Capriles.

The same situation can be seen for the examples Capriles gave in Merida 
(2012 
<http://www.cne.gob.ve/resultado_presidencial_2012/pp/3/reg_120201010.html> 
vs. 2013 
<http://www.cne.gob.ve/resultado_presidencial_2013/pp/3/reg_120201010.html>), 
and Nueva Esparta (2012 
<http://www.cne.gob.ve/resultado_presidencial_2012/pp/12/reg_150901015.html> 
vs. 2013 
<http://www.cne.gob.ve/resultado_presidencial_2013/pp/12/reg_150901015.html>), 
centers at which there was a very low vote count in 2012.

Given the unusually low vote count in these centers in 2012, the votes 
for both candidates drastically increases when 2013's results are 
compared to 2012.

In the Merida voting center, for example, votes for Capriles also 
increased by nearly 1000 percent, and were also much higher than the 
number of votes for Chavez from that center in 2012.

Other examples given by Capriles were also fabricated by manipulating 
the numbers of different vote tallies.

Capriles claimed that in some cases there were more votes than total 
voters registered at that voting center. However, the only example 
provided by Capriles is also false.

Capriles said that at a voting center in the state of Trujillo the 
number of voters for this center was 536, but that a total of 717 votes 
were tallied. However, CNE's results 
<http://www.cne.gob.ve/resultado_presidencial_2013/lvg/115/reg_190303002021.html> 
for this voting center show only 369 votes were tallied, not 717.

Communications Minister Ernesto Villegas explained during a press 
conference last night that Capriles had erroneously added together the 
votes from two separate voting tables, but was using the voter rolls 
from only one of the two tables.

To counter Capriles claims, government officials have pledged to publish 
online at the PSUV's website <http://www.psuv.org.ve/> all of the actual 
vote tallies from the thousands of voting centers around the country so 
that the public can see that the official results line up with the 
individual vote tallies.

Electoral witnesses from the Capriles campaign presumably signed off on 
all of the vote tallies, as they would have been present at the voting 
centers at the closing of the polls on Sunday.

The nature of Venezuela's electoral system makes the kind of fraud 
alleged by Capriles nearly impossible. Witnesses from both sides are 
present at every voting center around the country, and a random hot 
audit of 54 percent of the votes is conducted at all of the centers in 
the presence of all witnesses immediately after the polls close.

The paper receipts that each voter deposits in a sealed box are counted 
to assure that they line up with the tally from the voting machines, and 
all witnesses sign the tallies to certify that they witnessed the audit.

However, Capriles claimed yesterday that his witnesses were forcibly 
ejected, often at gunpoint, from nearly 300 voting centers around the 
country on Sunday.

No evidence was provided for this claim, and no independent reports of 
this happening were registered by any major media outlets on the day of 
the elections.

Pro-Chavez political commentator Mario Silva responded to the claim last 
night by questioning how this could have happened without anyone noticing.

"Do you really believe that hundreds of witnesses could be forcibly 
removed from the voting centers without anyone saying anything? Why 
haven't any of those witnesses made a denunciation or talked to the 
media?" he said.

Capriles has pledged to turn over all of his "evidence" of fraud to the 
National Electoral Council for review, and pledges to continue to demand 
a recount, or that the election be annulled.

The government has reported that 7 people have been killed so far in the 
violence that erupted around the country after Capriles claimed the 
elections were fraudulent.

-- 
---------------------
Michael A. Lebowitz
Professor Emeritus
Economics Department
Simon Fraser University
8888 University Drive
Burnaby, B.C., Canada V5A 1S6
Home:   Phone 604-689-9510
Cell: 604-789-4803





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