By Jim Kouri
Venezuelans are voting today as their President, Hugo Chavez, and his socialist agenda face a rival who is a favorite with people who are upset with the Chavez government’s cronyism and the rampant crime.
Henrique Capriles, a governor, poses a true threat to Chavez following a politically-savvy campaign that unites moderates and conservatives making Capriles a via alternative to Chavez’s iron-fisted rule.
During his own campaign, Chavez went on record as endorsing U.S. President Barack Obama for re-election. However, the Obama campaign and the compliant America news media ignored the revealing endorsement.
Chavez has cautioned voters that should he lose in the upcoming presidential election on the Oct. 7, 2012, a civil war is likely to erupt.
“If the right-wing’s presidential candidate gets into (office), it would put an end to the social programs promoted during 14 years of government, and as a result the country would enter into a civil war,” Chavez said on Saturday, according to the state-run Venezuelan News Agency (AVN).
AVN interviewed Chavez on television about the upcoming election against his only rival, conservative Henrique Capriles.
A former state governor, Capriles is the candidate of the Venezuelan coalition party made up of moderate, conservative and pro-capitalist groups.
“As occurs in the U.S. with progressives, Chavez labels the pro-business coalition as ‘right-wing,'” said geopolitical expert Dr. Saul Bernstein.
Chavez began his presidential campaign tour, which officially kicked off on July 1, with visits to his most loyal followers in the states of Aragua and Carabobo.
According to Chavez, when Capriles was governor of Miranda state, he withdrew official support from the Cuban medical teams that Chavez has promoted around the country to attend to the rural poor.
Chavez, 58, has governed since 1999 and plans to run for a third six-year term in order to continue pushing his socialist policies.
Should Chavez lose the election and a civil war erupts, he may be likely to depend on the Iranian intelligence and military personnel currently in Venezuela along with members of Hezbollah who now reside in that Latin American country.