Peru: Peruvians Approach Runoff Election with Uncertainty

NotiSur - South American Political and Economic Affairs, May 4, 2001 | Go to article overview

Peru: Peruvians Approach Runoff Election with Uncertainty


[The following article by Cecilia Remon is reprinted with the permission of Noticias Aliadas in Lima, Peru. It first appeared in the April 23, 2001, edition of the weekly publication Latinamerica Press.]

They call him Lazarus because he came back to life the week before Easter in the country's April 8 presidential and congressional elections. Just three months ago, former President Alan Garcia Perez (1985-1990) was politically dead, with polls showing that more than 50% of Peruvians would never vote for him.

Suddenly the possibility looms that Garcia will again occupy the presidential palace thanks to a campaign that convinced at least 25% of the electorate to overlook his disastrous term in office, which was plagued by hyperinflation, shortages of essential consumer items, corruption, and human rights violations.

Garcia, a social democrat of the Partido Aprista Peruano (PAP), faces a runoff election on June 3 against Alejandro Toledo, of the Peru Posible party, who won 36.5% of the vote. Garcia, with 26%, edged out Lourdes Flores Nano of the Unidad Nacional party, who took 24% of the vote.

Taking advantage of his gift for oratory, Garcia was able to excite voters who were initially wary of him. One month before the elections, polls indicated that only 12% of voters would choose him.

"Garcia is a seductive personality with arguments that are both clear and coherent. He has the ability to repeat a few simple ideas that are very well-expressed," psychologist Jorge Bruce said. "He comes off as very serene and doesn't lose his cool. He also has well-known oratorical skills and winds up being an irresistible candidate for many people."

Bruce said these gifts allowed Garcia to present himself as a legitimate candidate and "make people forget, partially, his disastrous former term." He aimed his campaign at young voters who do not remember what happened 10 or 15 years ago.

Garcia returned to Peru in late January to head the Aprista slate after nine years in exile. In 1992, after then President Alberto Fujimori (1990-2000) dissolved Congress and ordered the reorganization of the judicial branch in a self- coup, Garcia sought asylum in Colombia and later traveled to France. In December, with the help of legislators loyal to Fujimori, a law was overturned that had declared Garcia in contempt of court for failure to face charges of corruption and human rights violations.

Sociologist Julio Cotler said those who voted for Garcia "were undoubtedly people who forgot what his term in office was like or were not old enough to remember."

The Aprista party, founded by Victor Raul Haya de la Torre in the 1920s as the Alianza Popular Revolucionaria Americana (APRA), has a long history of coexistence and political alliances with governments and dictatorships that it considered ideological enemies. Thus de la Torre joined forces with the regime of Gen. Manuel Odria (1948-1956) against the first government of Fernando Belaunde (1963-1968), even though Odria had bitterly persecuted APRA and even declared the party illegal.

In 1990, APRA was behind Fujimori's victory against novelist Mario Vargas Llosa, which some analysts believe will move Fujimori loyalists to return the favor by helping elect Garcia.

While the big loser in the elections was the Fujimori legacy--his former economy minister, Carlos Bolona, got only 1.7% of the vote--many of his supporters voted for Flores and might back Garcia against Toledo, Fujimori's nemesis.

Once in power, analysts say, APRA will take over the administration of government, just as it did in 1985, and loyalists will occupy public posts. It is also possible that investigations into charges of corruption during the previous Fujimori government will be dropped, guaranteeing impunity for those accused. …

The rest of this article is only available to active members of Questia

Already a member? Log in now.

Notes for this article

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Default project is now your active project.
Project items
Notes
Cite this article

Cited article

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA 8, MLA 7, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Note: primary sources have slightly different requirements for citation. Please see these guidelines for more information.

Cited article

Peru: Peruvians Approach Runoff Election with Uncertainty
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger Reset View mode
Search within

Search within this article

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Help
Full screen
Items saved from this article
  • Highlights & Notes
  • Citations
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

matching results for page

    Questia reader help

    How to highlight and cite specific passages

    1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
    2. Click or tap the last word you want to select, and you’ll see everything in between get selected.
    3. You’ll then get a menu of options like creating a highlight or a citation from that passage of text.

    OK, got it!

    Cited passage

    Style
    Citations are available only to our active members.
    Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA 8, MLA 7, APA and Chicago citation styles.

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

    1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

    Cited passage

    Thanks for trying Questia!

    Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

    Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

    Buy instant access to save your work.

    Already a member? Log in now.

    Search by... Author
    Show... All Results Primary Sources Peer-reviewed

    Oops!

    An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.