ABSTRACT

Venezuela: Issues for Congress [August 30, 2012]   [open pdf - 676KB]

"Under the rule of populist President Hugo Chávez, first elected in 1998 and reelected to a six-year term in December 2006, Venezuela has undergone enormous political changes, with a new constitution and unicameral legislature, and even a new name for the country, the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela. Human rights organizations have expressed concerns about the deterioration of democratic institutions and threats to freedom of expression under the Chávez government. Venezuela is scheduled to hold its next presidential election on October 7, 2012, with President Chávez running against Henrique Capriles Radonski, the unified opposition candidate. While Chávez's continued popularity and use of state resources bode well for his reelection, high rates of crime, inflation, and other economic problems could erode his support. Until recently, a wildcard in the election was the health status of President Chávez, but at this juncture Chávez appears to have bounced back from two bouts of an undisclosed form of cancer. Looking ahead, however, Chávez's health status raises questions about Venezuela's political future."

Report Number:
CRS Report for Congress, R40938
Author:
Publisher:
Date:
2012-08-30
Series:
Copyright:
Public Domain
Retrieved From:
Via E-mail
Format:
pdf
Media Type:
application/pdf
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