Colombia Elected First Leftist President –

Colombia Elected First Leftist President

After decades of violence, Colombia’s left has voted for the first time to elect a president. A 62-year-old senator and former Bogota mayor, Petro has advocated free higher education and universal health care. His running mate will be the first Black Colombian vice president. Petro’s victory is the most significant election in Colombia’s history.

While the international press has painted the military as anti-Petro, many military members are strongly supportive of the former guerrilla. Veteran soldiers have backed the leftist candidate and have actively campaigned. The armed forces have suffered several scandals, which make it difficult for them to make political statements. But the commander of the armed forces, who is prohibited from making political statements, is hardly alone. Some military members have even endorsed Petro, despite the armed forces’ history of corruption.

The M-19, which was founded in 1970, was Colombia’s second wave of guerrilla movements. The M-19 seized the national judicial building in response to allegations of electoral fraud, but the group was later demobilized and became a political party. It also used kidnapping as a means of gaining concessions from the government. However, Mr. Petro and his team are pursuing democracy in a more peaceful way.

Gustavo Petro, a former guerrilla turned politician, won the June 19 presidential elections, a narrow victory. Petro pledged to raise taxes on the wealthy and halt open-pit mining and oil exploration, which account for nearly half of Colombia’s export revenues. Although the results have been far from definitive, this election did signal the beginning of a new political era in Colombia.

The Colombian economy is over-reliant on oil exports and the cocaine industry. He aims to reform the country’s economy by shifting its focus to other industries. He also wants to increase taxes on the rich to fund social programs. As a left-wing president, Mr. Petro will face many challenges, including a divided legislature. A left-wing government in Colombia is likely to lead a government that is ineffective in meeting its goals.

Mr Petro’s election comes at a time when many Colombians remain suspicious of the intentions of the new president-elect. While polls have shown a strong support for Mr Petro among younger voters, older Colombians have less confidence in his intentions. Mr Petro was a guerrilla who fought in the country’s long-running armed conflict.

In the run-off election, Mr. Petro won with a margin of three points, a low amount but still significant. His victory has been attributed to the massive mobilization of periphery voters. However, Mr. Petro still faces many challenges. Petro’s victory will be a test of Venezuela’s socialist model and the international community’s ability to act against the drug trade.

Despite the high level of poverty in Colombia, the leftist Petro has more than 50 percent of the vote. His campaign’s platform focuses on transforming the country’s economic system, and he pledged to implement reforms that will make the country less unequal. Petro won the election against Rodolfo Hernandez, an anti-corruption businessman who had a much lower number of votes.

About the Author: Allison Kraus

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