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Montevideo, November 18th 2018 - 01:42 UTC

Uruguay's local elections: no major number surprises but interesting changes in the political map

Monday, May 11th 2015 - 08:47 UTC
Full article 14 comments
Daniel Martinez is the next mayor of Montevideo, which holds almost half of Uruguay's electorate Daniel Martinez is the next mayor of Montevideo, which holds almost half of Uruguay's electorate
Edgardo Novick a non political figure had a surprising turnout and becomes head of the opposition in Montevideo Edgardo Novick a non political figure had a surprising turnout and becomes head of the opposition in Montevideo
Lucia Topolansky who only a couple of months ago was leading comfortably will have to keep her Senate bench Lucia Topolansky who only a couple of months ago was leading comfortably will have to keep her Senate bench
Jose Mujica's attempts to turn the tide in closely fought departments such as Maldonado and Cerro Largo were not sufficient Jose Mujica's attempts to turn the tide in closely fought departments such as Maldonado and Cerro Largo were not sufficient

Uruguay Sunday's department and municipal elections resulted mostly as forecasted with no major surprises, and as advanced by MP 9 May, in the capital Montevideo, with half the country's electorate, the two promising candidates have effectively been the elected mayor, Daniel Martinez and Edgardo Novick, a successful businessman and non political figure, who now becomes head of the opposition.

 The results are based on projections from primary results on midnight Sunday, early Monday vote-count and will need confirmation from the Electoral Court. However in most cases differences were sufficient to advance the results.

Martinez and the ruling Broad Front took the city of Montevideo by almost the same percentage as when the national elections of last October just below 55% while the newly former Concertacion, almost 40%. Under the Uruguayan system for the regional governments the first vote count goes for the party, and then inside the winning party, the candidate with most votes.

This means that in Montevideo, Martinez collected 32% of total votes cast, and his main competitor Senator and former First Lady Lucia Topolansky, 17%. In the Concertacion, Novick was the winner with 21% of the overall vote, almost doubling his two runner-ups together.

In the rest of the 19 departments, the ruling, at national level, Broad Front coalition besides Montevideo, managed to retain Canelones, the second electoral district of Uruguay, plus Rocha and won in Rio Negro for the first time.

However it lost Maldonado, which was considered the jewel of the crown, which was taken by the main opposition National party. Maldonado includes Punta del Este and some of Uruguay's main beaches which attract the rich and famous from Argentina and Brazil. Well managed it should be one of the most prosperous departments, but this seems to have been not the case, plus the flawed drinking water system.

The National party also confirmed control over Soriano, Colonia, Flores, San Jose, Florida, Durazno, Cerro Largo, Treinta y Tres, Lavalleja, Tacuarembó and as said above recovered Maldonado after ten years, and Artigas after five years.

Still in dispute because they are too close to call are Salto and Paysandu, both strongly disputed by the Broad Front from junior opposition Colorado party and the National party respectively.

The Colorado party was however able to retain one of the two departments it controlled, Rivera because Salto is being fought vote by vote.

A first analysis can be advanced by saying that one of the main losers of this local governments' election is former president Jose Mujica. His wife Lucia Topolansky was expected to win in Montevideo, but lost quite badly and in two highly disputed departments, Maldonado and Cerro Largo, where Mujica attended the final closing rallies with all his personal prestige, wasn't enough to turn the tide.

Anyway final figures, including municipal results, from the Electoral Court should be coming in the next 48 hours.

Categories: Politics, Latin America, Uruguay.

Top Comments

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  • ChrisR

    It does make me wonder about MP just parroting one of the government supported news outlets.

    “No surprises” other than NOVICK, a businessman came from nowhere to become second and leader of the opposition? Guess where he will be if he manages another blistering rise in votes in 2020?

    BTW he knocked out La Tronca the harridan wife of No Money Pepe who having stood by her on all the platforms during the lying process didn't bother turning up at her “piss off we don't want you” presentation which was supposed to be her acceptance speech as Mayor. Oh, JOY!

    AND, they lost Maldonado, so now we are free of the Pizza Parlour Manageress, a friend of NMP who was made the Departmental Head of Oncology FFS! She had to have an additional layer of doctors to “advise” her so she didn't end up killing people! You couldn't make it up in a grown up country, but here, heh, if NMP wants to pad the wage bill with his women friends who is going to bother? Not his 'wife' obviously.

    I haven't had so much fun since Chavez croaked!

    May 11th, 2015 - 07:37 pm 0
  • Stevie

    Chris, you are the only one laughing, FA got 55% of the votes. The fact that the pink ones joined forces in Montevideo and still lost by a wide margin, is far overshadowing the fact that more people voted on Novick personally. The personal votes only counts within the groupation, and really only shows a more united front... From the pinkies....

    Good luck betting on that horse, you really need to read Uruguayan history...

    But indeed, laugh you on, I think I can see the fun from your perspective... Kind of...

    May 11th, 2015 - 07:54 pm 0
  • ChrisR

    @ 2 Breakdowns R Us
    “you really need to read Uruguayan history...”

    Oh I have and it doesn't take long to understand that THAT is one of the problems: the pollies are always looking over their shoulder.

    If only they could grow up, believe in themselves and stop the graft for their mates I would have respect for them.

    You seem to have overlooked Novick and his Independent Party: they have La Tronca, your heroine, shitting her knickers; just read some of her comments and THINK about them if you don't believe me. I can spot a frightened pollie a mile off.

    May 11th, 2015 - 10:18 pm 0
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