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Chile: Communist Party pre-candidate leads presidential polls

Chile's presidential race is open after a vote for a new constituent assembly earlier this month showing a drop in support for parties that have dominated the government for the past 30 years.

Daniel Jadue, a candidate for the Communist Party, was at the forefront in the last opinion poll before Chile's presidential elections in November.

If the elections were held this weekend, around 20% of the people interviewed by Cadem would vote for Jadue, the current mayor of the Recoleta neighborhood in Santiago, compared to 11% who had said the same at the end of April. The candidate stepped over right-wing contender Joaquín Lavín, who saw his support rise from 10% to 16%.

The independent and smaller parties on the far left fared better, leaving a deeply fractured political scene following a wave of protests in late 2019 against inequality and the free market economic model.

Jadue will compete against Gabriel Boric, the candidate of the left-wing alliance of the Frente Amplio. In the survey of 1,000 people carried out on May 20, Boric obtained 5% support. The survey had a margin of error of plus or minus 3.1 percentage points.

Lavín also faces competition to be the candidate of the right-wing alliance, having as his biggest challenge so far Sebastián Sichel, who saw his support rise from 5% to 11%.

Other candidates are likely to appear, even after the primaries. Support for Yasna Provoste, a Christian Democratic Party senator, increased her preferences from 4% to 13% in the latest poll, even though she has yet to declare any intention to run for president.

A not very transparent candidate
In 2018, Mayor Jadue was accused of anti-union practices, after 2 leaders of the Association of General Cemetery Officials sued him in the 2nd Labor Court of Santiago for anti-union practices, after the mayor in a meeting tried to the unionists of "criminals, liars and wretches."

In the same year the municipality of Pichilemufiled a lawsuit for 206 million pesos against Daniel Jadue for a reconstruction and expansion project of the town hall building that was awarded to the company PAC Consultores, owned by Jadue.

In 2020, the mayor of Providencia, Evelyn Matthei (UDI), uncovered a corruption case in which the Itelecom company, which is dedicated to public lighting, paid bribes to various authorities in the country to obtain gigantic tenders, a situation that involved several communes of the Metropolitan Region of Santiago being the commune of Recoleta under the administration of Daniel Jadue the second that would have paid the most. Jadue is still being investigated for corruption for a sum of more than 10 billion pesos.

On December 29, 2020, the Simon Wiesenthal Center denounced the mayor of Recoleta as one of the ten greatest anti-Semites of 2020. The report assures that Jadue “accuses the Jews of controlling the media and of double loyalty”.

Source: Perfil / Wikipedia
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