Sunday, February 17th was Election Day for Ecuador. It has been so interesting to see the differences in election campaigns from the United States. Here are some of the ones most surprising to me:
- Everyone is required to vote.
- While the president has been campaigning for reelection, he has not actually been president, and the vice president has taken on the president position.
- Elections are the 17th, and no one has been allowed to consume alcohol since the 15th.
- While I was in Otovalo a few weekends ago there was a huge campaign for the current president Rafael Correa to be reelected. There was a speaker in front of a crowd who would speak for a few sentences then Correa’s theme song would play every other three minutes. The speaker was wearing jeans, and a polo the color of Correa’s campaign, lime green. The speaker was Rafael, I really had no idea. There were a few police walking around in the crowd, and a few in cars in the area. It was so laid back, I was so surprised.
- There was an actual campaign sign in graffiti on walls promoting Rafael.
Rafael won the election. I do not think it was very surprising to anyone, most people I had spoken to wanted him reelected, and his posters and flags were hung in every city I had visited or drove by in bus. His slogan was “tenemos un presidente, ya tenemos Rafael” meaning we have a president, we have Rafael. He will continue to be president for another term of four years in Ecuador.