July 4, 2006

The Chavez Effect: Two for Two

Well, the election in Mexico is achingly close, and the legal challenges will surely mount. One thing we can say for sure, though: Andrés Manuel López Obrador's comfortable lead, which lasted for two years prior to the election, vanished the second Calderón managed to link him to Chávez.

Just like in Perú, even the perception of Chavophilia has proven an electoral poison pill in Mexico.

Imagine how different the hemispheric picture would look without the Chavez Effect. With Ollanta and AMLO in power, all the tooth-gnashing about an authoritarian backslide in the hemisphere would have some real meat on its bones. As it stands, Hugo's club is a problem for Bolivia, Venezuela and Cuba - not for the hemisphere.