On May 20, the Venezuelan election was won by Nicolás Maduro, confirming what many critics of the country have predicted for year, Venezuela is becoming a dictatorship.
Madura, leader of the socialist party, has been president since 2013 and has watched the country fall into chaos. Currently, Maduro’s popularity is at its lowest ever, with only 18 to 25 percent of Venezuelans supporting his administration. With such low support, how did Maduro win 68% of total votes?
Fewer than half of Venezuela’s registered voters participated in the election. Many of Maduro’s critics boycotted the election in protest of the socialist party’ coercing of voters through unethical practices.
Due to Maduro’s policies and flawed leadership, Venezuela has been in a crisis. The Venezuelan currency, the Bolivar, is quickly becoming worthless due to hyperinflation. Concurrently, there are shortages in both food and medicine. In response to these various crises, hundreds of thousands of Venezuelans have fled the country. In order to court the remaining voters, the Socialist Party has been trading food and resources for votes, placing food assistance shelters near polling places.
For many months leading up to the election, there were fears that the results would be tampered with. This fear has proven true and 50 nations worldwide have declared the election illegitimate.
The future of Venezuela does not look bright. Despite plenty of opposition, Maduro and the socialist party have all the power. They have jailed many opposition party leaders and have control of the military. Without the involvement of other nations, Venezuela is sure to crumble.