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Montevideo, October 19th 2018 - 17:58 UTC

Chile's ruling coalition proclaims presidential candidate

Monday, August 1st 2005 - 21:00 UTC
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Chile's Christian Democratic Party (DC) proclaimed Saturday Socialist Michelle Bachelet as the only candidate of the ruling coalition (Concertacion for Democracy) for December's presidential election.

Christian Democrats are the latest member of the ruling "Concertacion", in office since 1990, to proclaim Ms. Bachelet candidacy, as have done the Socialists, Radical Social Democrats and Party for Democracy.

The event took place at a meeting of the party's national board in the congressional building at Valparaiso, 75 miles northwest of Santiago.

Christian Democrats had originally nominated former Foreign Minister Soledad Alvear, who dropped out of the race in May in favour of Bachelet, the front-runner in all presidential preference polls so far.

After her proclamation Ms Bachelet thanked the DC and voiced scathing criticism of the conservative opposition, which in this election is divided between the candidacies of former Santiago Mayor Joaquin Lavin and businessman Sebastian Piñera.

"Today we continue to demonstrate the vast difference between the Concertacion and the right. The right started out with one candidate and ended up with two. We speak of the unity of the nation; the opposition speaks to itself, trying to explain why formerly they were an alliance and today they are only split parties" said Ms. Bachelet.

She also thanked former Presidents Patricio Aylwin and Eduardo Frei, both Christian Democrats and current Socialist President Ricardo Lagos for their support.

The latest opinion polls from the Libertad y Desarrollo Institute, linked to the right liberal parties, published last week in Santiago showed the former Defence Minister leading with 39% of vote intentions, followed by Sebastian Piñera from the right wing Renovación Nacional with 19%.

A second opinion poll from Benchmark has Ms. Bachelet with 42% of votes followed by Joaquín Lavín, 23%, from the conservative Independent Democratic Union.

Categories: Mercosur.

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