Blogwatch

April 1, 2009
Roundup of election results from Europe to Latin America

From Europe to Latin America, voters elected new leaders and governments during the last few months. Here is a roundup of the newly-elected with reactions from bloggers on the ground.

Country Election Blogs
Montenegro A coalition led by Montenegro’s prime minister made gains in parliamentary elections on March 29. The ruling coalition is likely to push for European Union membership talks. A blogger at “Blogactiv” describes the role of the EU in the country’s elections.
Macedonia Macedonia’s presidential election is headed for a runoff on April 5 after peaceful elections on March 22 failed to determine a winner. Ahead of the vote, the “Fistful of Euros” blog called ethnic Albanian candidate Imer Selmani “Macedonia’s Obama.”
Slovakia Slovakia is also headed to a runoff in April after its March 21 presidential election. The “Fistful of Euros” blog also provides a summary of the election in Slovakia.
Azerbaijan Voters in Azerbaijan approved a controversial referendum to ban presidential term limits on March 18. An American journalist in Azerbaijan writes about what the referendum will mean for the country’s future.
El Salvador El Salvador veered left in its presidential election on March 15, meaning Mauricio Funes of the Farabundo Marti National Liberation Front (FMLN) will join a growing number of leftist Latin American leaders. Read our roundup of blogger reactions.
Russia Local elections made headlines in Russia, where an independent candidate caused an upset, replacing incumbent Mayor Mikhail Savchenko of the pro-Kremlin United Russia. “The Power Vertical” blog explores the implications of the vote for a unified Russia.
Venezuela In mid-February, Venezuela voted to end term limits, allowing President Hugo Chávez to run for re-election. Read our roundup of blogger reactions.
Israel Since Israel’s hotly-contested parliamentary elections in early February, hardliner Benjamin Netanyahu and Ehud Barak, head of the much more liberal Labor Party, have joined together to form a coalition government. Read our roundup of blogger reactions following the vote.
Bolivia Bolivians approved a new constitution in late January, seen as a victory for President Evo Morales. Read our roundup of blogger reactions.
Upcoming Elections
Moldova Moldova is scheduled to hold its parliamentary elections on April 5 and the Community Party is considered likely to retain and may even increase its majority in the 101-member parliament. Blogger and Peace Corps volunteer “Dezvoltareerena” hopes the elections “will help bring Moldova into a new era of development.”
Indonesia On April 9, Indonesia — Southeast Asia’s biggest democracy — is slated to hold parliamentary elections to determine which parties can field candidates for the presidential elections in July. Read what a Worldfocus contributing blogger had to say about how the election season is shaping up in one Indonesian town.
India India, the world’s largest democracy, begins its multi-stage parliamentary elections on April 16, with the fifth and final stage on May 13. “Rashmi” blogs that in the run up to the elections the media coverage was focused on “juvenile” topics.
South Africa On April 22, South Africa is scheduled to hold its third general election after becoming a democracy and the first since a schism in the ruling African National Congress (ANC). Blogger Becca Cohen attended an election debate and blogged about corruption being a major theme.
Ecuador Ecuador is scheduled to hold presidential elections on April 26, after ratifying a new constitution this past September. Current President Correa enjoys a 60 percent approval rate. Blogger “Linea” notes that all the houses around him have signs supporting one candidate or another, suggesting that people have already made up their minds. 

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