In Venezuela's complex political council, where negotiations, strategies and internal tensions converge, a personal… Maria Corina Machado It appears as a central element. The clear winner of the opposition primary is still disqualified by the regime to run in next year's presidential election. Their participation poses a political dilemma for both Nicolas Maduro's regime and international actors, especially the United States.
Machado is the most prominent opposition leader, and enjoys increasing popularity capable of challenging the dominance of Nicolas Maduro's regime. However, his path to the presidency is hampered by his deliberate political disqualification, which, for many observers, reflects fear on the part of the Chavez dictatorship, not only by the fact that his free participation in the 2024 presidential elections would be more risky. Threatening to end his stay in power, but his accession to the presidency also does not represent guarantees of a consensual transition such as that desired by some sectors of Chavismo.
Venezuelan lawyer and political advisor Giulio Cellini RamosThe Maduro regime has made this clear Authorizing María Corina Machado to participate in the elections is like signing her resignation.
He added: “I think that the probability of Maduro resigning tomorrow is zero, which is the same percentage that I believe will enable him to take power because of… “It has a very clear preference in opinion studies, while the regime suffers from a state of public discontent that basically amounts to annoyance.”, Cellini said.
So, “For the government to politically empower María Corina Machado and allow her to participate in the elections is tantamount to Nicolas Maduro signing his resignation. The director of LOG Consultancy confirmed.
This position reflects the regime's perception of the danger posed by the opposition leader, whose popularity is increasing, according to various opinion studies.
Surveys indicate that Machado enjoys clear favoritism among the Venezuelan population It makes her a candidate capable of challenging Chavismo. For the regime, losing power to someone they do not trust and who does not guarantee a transition on its terms is unacceptable, which is why Chavismo spokesmen, like Diosdado Cabello, have taken it upon themselves to repeat ad nauseam that Machado will not be empowered.
But for the political researcher and political analyst, Piero TribicioniHowever, this impossibility of authorization is not fixed since one of the legs of the negotiating table between Chavismo and the opposition is supported precisely by the United States, which has stressed on several occasions that one of the conditions for the lifting of sanctions is that the regime, with the authorization of all Venezuelan politicians, including This includes, of course, the big winner of the primaries, Maria Corina Machado, as agreed at the meeting in Barbados.
“The exact terms of the Barbados Agreements signed between Chavismo and the opposition are not known to public opinion. What must be clear is that one of the essential aspects of these negotiations to be implemented is the holding of presidential elections in Venezuela next year and the actual need for the participation of all disqualified candidates, including Maria Corina Machado.“, the most prominent political scientist.
Although Tripicione believes that Machado will sooner or later end up being empowered by the regime, based on steps taken by both parties, such as the release of political prisoners by the regime and the partial lifting of sanctions by the United States, he warns that he should not Underestimating the United Socialist Party of Venezuela (Psuv) and that the coming year will be decisive in its strategy to destroy the image of the liberal leader.
“I think they will lift the exclusion of María Corina Machado, but in parallel, the Chavista mechanism will definitely start structuring some narratives to break the support she has been gaining,” the political scientist said.
“We cannot underestimate Chavismo because they are a political force that is bad at governing according to the balance of their administration and their economic policy, but they manage narratives and political strategy very well, and in this regard they are still very skilled,” explained Trebicione. . .
“Maria Corina Machado today triples Maduro’s voting intention, but Chavismo has other political tools it can use to try to fragment opposition votes.”he added.
From the United States' point of view, The situation represents a diplomatic and strategic challenge. Although he is aware of the Maduro regime's reluctance to empower Machado, he… The primary interest of the United States is to achieve free presidential elections under normal conditions in Venezuela.
but, The likelihood of the regime approving Machado's mandate appears to be very slim. Instead, we see that the strategy pursued by the Venezuelan regime in promoting opposition nominations works to confuse and disperse votes, seeking to weaken Machado's choice, and encourage abstention from voting if he is not qualified.
“What the government will seek is to have false opposition candidates confuse and disperse the votes, in addition to excluding Maria Corina Machado, through which it will seek to obtain It encourages abstention from voting. “This would be the ideal scenario for Chavismo, where they can win as a minority, because the ideal for them is to abandon the electoral process,” Cellini Ramos said.
No less important is Chavista's sharp ability to manage the political narrative and its historical control over power, which allowed it to launch a strategic counterattack on the opposition, minimize its mistakes and maximize its successes. However, increasing support for Machado, evident in the recent opposition primaries, could lead to a change in the regime's tactics, reversing her exclusion while deploying new strategies against her.
The Maduro regime seeks to undermine the popular will so strongly expressed in favor of María Corina Machado. The government's strategy aims to break down opposition voices and undermine Machado's support. Over the years, Chavismo has demonstrated its adeptness at managing political discourses and strategies, and is expected to use these resources to counter growing support for the opposition leader.
The opposition leader, despite her exclusion from public office, challenged this restriction and maintained her firm stance, even before the regime's court, where she made a surprise appearance to demand that her disqualification be lifted.
“María Corina has continued her rhetoric over the past few months to ensure that she is not disqualified because she was not notified about the procedures, but what procedures can be expected from a court that is the executive arm of the Maduro government, so we cannot be governed by the procedural law that identifies lapses,” Cellini said. Legal”.
“For the government, it was important for Maria Corina to appear before the court to request a reconsideration of the decision to exclude her in order to gain institutional support and be able in some way to justify the decision,” Cellini said.
“Maria Corina going to the Court of Order means in some way that she recognizes this institution. But it's clear she won't recognize him for anything in return. It would be a strategic mistake because the government later He could rely on the fact that he did not qualify her because she did not go to court“he added.
For the political analyst, the fact that Machado attended the regime's Supreme Court is a success because it “now puts the ball on the government's side” and if they cannot empower it “They will have to bear the national and international cost that this entails.”.
the number Alex is hardThe detainee, in an operation in which the United States participated, may represent a bargaining chip for the Venezuelan regime. His arrest and possible use as a bill of exchange demonstrates the complexity of the Barbados negotiations and the need to build trust between the two parties.
Trust, a crucial element in negotiations, is supported by demonstrating it The United States adheres to the agreements. Saab's release, in addition to being a possible condition for Machado's permission, would contribute to improving the climate of talks between the two parties, which historically do not trust each other.
Alex Saab may represent a bargaining chip for the United States, but in the end It was already a hindrance to them. Because they detained him in surgery in Cape Verde, they exposed him in orange prison clothes, which is a very strong symbol, and they kept him in prison for more than three years. They got all the information they were interested in“They put pressure on him and he came back without money because they undoubtedly seized any amount of assets,” Selini Ramos said.
The complexities of the Venezuelan situation underscore the importance of holding a free electoral process and rehabilitating the legitimate opposition on the political scene. The character of María Corina Machado and the way the Maduro regime manages her potential candidacy will be crucial to the country's democratic future.
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