Former Bolivian President Evo Morales's political party MAS has claimed victory in the country's presidential election, with Morales's handpicked successor Luis Arce securing over 50% of the vote, according to exit polls. If confirmed, the result will put the socialist party back in power almost a year after a right-wing coup that ousted Morales and installed Jeanine Áñez as president.
The election was postponed twice, and protests rocked Bolivia for months leading up to the vote, calling out the government's use of military and police repression and violence against Indigenous communities.
"It's an extraordinary election," says Ollie Vargas, a reporter for Kawsachun News. "In 2019, Evo Morales won by a margin of just over 10%, and now we have a margin of over 20% with which the left is ahead."
Democracy Now! also speaks with Leonardo Flores, Latin America campaign coordinator of CodePink, who calls the election results "a huge, huge victory" for Bolivian people and for democracy itself. "It's a blow against neoliberalism and fascism in this country," says Flores.
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