The Chilean people will vote in the new presidential election on Sunday. Former student leader leftist Gabriel Boric is fighting hard-line conservative leader Jose Antonio Cast in the presidential election. This is the most polarized election since the country’s return to democracy in 1990.
The heat spread during the election campaign. During the campaign, Jose Antonio sometimes slammed Gabriel Boric’s alliance with the Communist Party. Antonio Cast has also been widely criticized politically for speaking out during the reign of former dictator General Augusto Pinochet, who was ousted three decades ago.
There have been months of protests in Chile in 2019 against economic inequality. Then for the first time the presidential election is taking place. This vote has finally paved the way for constitutional reform. Attempts are now underway to draft the country’s decades-old constitution.
Kenneth Bunker, director of the consulting firm Tresquintos, says: It’s the old division of left and right. Such conflicting positions and polarization could drive some voters away. “
The eldest of the two candidates is Antonio Cast. Age 55 years. The former A Congress member is known as the far right. He is, of course, a little behind Gabriel Boric in opinion polls. Borik, a 35-year-old former student leader. He is contesting this time as a candidate of a leftist alliance.
There were seven presidential candidates in the first round of elections last November. As a result, moderate voters will decide who is going to be the president this time.
Opinion polls indicate fierce competition. Borik is slightly ahead in the pre-election polls. On the other hand, Kast was at the top in the first round of voting. Surveys show that middle-class voters are more inclined towards boric than caste. Even then the gap will be small. But history is again against Borik. The winners of the first round of the Chilean presidential election since 1999 have also won the second round.
Many Chileans support the free market economy, which has contributed to decades of economic growth in this copper-rich country. Through this, Chile became one of the symbols of economic stability in Latin America. But many people are desperate to prevent deep economic inequality. This number is constantly increasing. One of the demands that people are most proud of is a partial retirement allowance. Critics have blamed the high privatization of Chile’s pension system. Others are critical of the high cost, uncertain private education, and the difference between private and public health care.
Conservative voters in the country are also questioning the growing number of immigrants in Chile. Besides, people are also worried about law and order.
Whoever wins the presidential election will have to face a referendum. The referendum will be held to find out whether the new constitution will be adopted or not. The government will have to decide whether to approve or reject it in the first year. Left and independent MP-controlled councils are leading the way in reforming the constitution.