The nation’s election officials gave the go ahead Thursday to a resumption of the presidential campaign.
The Tribunal Supremo de Elecciones reminded political parties that the moratorium on campaigning is over. The election rules shut down campaigning over the Christmas and New Year’s holidays.
Most political parties comply. Johnny Araya of the Partido Libración Nacional is getting heat because he sent out a New Year’s greeting on the Internet. He did so Jan. 1, and opponents are construing this as a campaign action.
Members of the Partido Unidad Social Cristiana caused a minor flap when they carried party flags and beat a bongo drum during the Tope Nacional, the Dec. 26 horse parade. Police ushered them away.
However, many of the presidential candidates also were there, but they were on horses and not obviously campaigning.
The election is Sunday, Feb. 2, so there is not much time to mount a campaign. Most have been less than memorable so far. Many voters are not sure if they will vote, and many more are undecided for whom they will vote.
Another election rule requires survey firms to register. Election officials believe that reputable firms will produce reputable results even if they are working at the behest of a political party. The idea is to avoid the use of fake polls that promote one candidate over another. Poll results showing a likely winner have a tendency to suppress the vote for opponents
Meanwhile the Tribunal is getting ready to begin the delivery of more than a million ballots to the appropriate polling spots.