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Colombia's Newly Elected President Ivan Duque (left), New Vice-President Marta Lucia Ramirez (right) Colombia's Newly Elected President Ivan Duque (left), New Vice-President Marta Lucia Ramirez (right) Source: Duque for President Campaign

Medellin, Antioquia Vote Crushes Autocratic Socialists, Hands Moderate Ivan Duque Presidency of Colombia

Published in Editorial Written by  June 18 2018 font size decrease font size increase font size 1
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By 54% to 42%, moderate conservative Ivan Duque handily defeated socialist-populist Gustavo Petro in the final round of Colombia’s presidential voting June 17, with Medellin and Antioquia providing most of the margin of victory.

Both Medellin and Antioquia massively delivered 72% of their votes for Duque compared to only 22% for Petro, while Duque also won majorities in 24 of Colombia’s 32 departments.

Petro won 54% of the vote in Bogota, where he once held the Mayor’s office.

Duque’s vice-presidential running mate -- veteran Conservative Party politician Marta Lucia Ramirez -- now becomes Colombia’s first-ever female Vice President.

In an attempt to broaden his appeal to more-moderate voters, former M-19 guerrilla Petro spent the past several weeks trying to whitewash his socialist-populist past including issuance of a feeble statement calling for a repeat of elections in the socialist dictatorship of neighboring Venezuela, whose leaders and governments he has publicly defended.

During the presidential campaign, Petro also issued a veiled threat -- disguised as an “invitation” -- that suggested he would expropriate the sugar-cane processing operations of Medellin-based Carlos Ardila Lulle, owner of the mainstream RCN radio and television news network. Such a threat carries frightening consequences, as Venezuela's government has similarly expropriated and destroyed nearly the entire private sector in that country, triggering a near-total collapse of the economy and forcing millions to flee the resulting starvation and a massive surge of street violence.

RCN’s “NTN24” international broadcast network was thrown out of Venezuela for vigorous and continuing exposes of that government’s massive corruption, its collusion with Colombian narco-terrorist communist groups including FARC and ELN, its repression of free speech, free press, free markets and Venezuela’s freedom parties, its rigging of elections, and its imprisonment of opposition leaders.

The Venezuelan government had been hoping that Petro would defeat Duque, as Duque is among a group of leading South American politicians who have brought suit in an international human-rights court against Venezuela’s fraudulent elections and its massive repressions.

Following a consistent pattern of insulting Duque and his supporters -- rather than democratically congratulating Duque on an overwhelming victory -- Petro instead claimed in his post-election speech that Duque won the presidential race by “lying” about Petro’s veiled autocratic-socialist agenda.

In contrast to Petro’s venom, Duque's post-election speech continued to offer words of moderation and conciliation.

“We are not going to deprive anyone of the rights they have achieved in our country,” Duque said. “We are always going to have a constructive attitude in government, deliberative but motivated to consolidate this idea of the ‘Pact for Colombia,’ where we move forward an agenda of reforms to make this country grow, defeat poverty, expand the middle class, and plant hope again in every corner of the territory . . .

“[I]f illicit crops [coca and cocaine trafficking] continue to grow in our country, threatening national security, if [narco-terrorist] money and hidden weapons reappear, we see that there are some who allow, with their weapons, to continue obstructing the institutional course of the country or what is worse, silencing the authorities and silencing citizenship, then what we are doing is breaking the longing for peace . . .

“Our country has to be the country of environmental sustainability, [so] here we are going to protect the [highland] páramos, the rivers, the diverse ecosystems, the protection of fauna and flora, the promotion of electric vehicles, the country of reduction, reuse and recycling, the country of twenty-first century ethics that protect nature and create entrepreneurship where [the environment] is also preserved . . .

“We are going to become once and for all the nation of social justice, of equity policy, where in the whole territory we guarantee a dignified education, with [full-day] classes, with double [breakfast and lunch] feeding, with preschools, with technical education and where free university education reaches strata 1 and 2 [the poorest sectors] of our country,” he added.

Read 502 times Last modified on Last modified on September 11 2018

1 comment

  • Comment Link Pattie Robertson June 18 2018 posted by Pattie Robertson

    Thanks for your newsworthy article. We are in Mexico but watching carefully what is going on in Colombia and are very relieved to see who the new President is.

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Medellin Herald is a locally produced, English-language news and advisory service uniquely focused upon a more-mature audience of visitors, investors, conference and trade-show attendees, property buyers, expats, retirees, volunteers and nature lovers.

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