Ladies and gentlemen, meet the loser of the recent Bolivian presidential election. He came in last, with single digits in the exit polls, which I’m sure you’ll agree is a dismal showing compared to Evo’s commanding lead. But hey! Why let a little thing like one’s own massive unpopularity deter one from uttering bitter and butthurt speculations about the undisputed winner, eh?
Exit polls proclaimed Evo Morales the victor at nearly 60% support. Last month, Tuto Quiroga announced, after learning that early polls showed six out of every ten Bolivians voting for Morales, that if it were true, he would eat his watch.
The official data up to now, with 57.4% of the votes counted, give Evo Morales the win with almost 55% support, followed by conservative businessman Samuel Doria Medina (28.6%) and Quiroga in last place, at 11.16%.
“We’ll see, there’s still time, but first let’s wait for the results,” said the opposition candidate during a press conference, assuring that he has enough tomato sauce, as well as llajua (a spicy sauce, typically Bolivian) to carry out his promise.
Now that the predictions appear to be coming true, many Bolivians are coming out with sarcasm on social media to demand that Quiroga keep his promise.
“That’s why Evo Morales wants 60%, to see me eat my watch,” said the ex-president, ironically.
On Tuesday, Quiroga also criticized the actions of the Supreme Electoral Tribunal (TSE), as the organism took more than 24 hours to make public the official figures of the vote count due to technical problems and a supposed threat of computer sabotage.
Quiroga denounced the TSE as “servile” and “inefficient”, claiming that it is manipulating the results to “rob” the opposition and inflate the vote count for Morales in rural areas.
“Never in the recent democratic history of Bolivia has there been such a show of ineptitude, incapacity and inefficiency on the part of the electoral organism, which makes one think they are manipulating and ‘cooking’ the results,” maintained Quiroga.
It is the second time that Quiroga has been defeated by Morales in an election, as both leaders also contended in the elections of 2005, in which Morales became the first indigenous president of Bolivia.
Poor Tuto. He’s been virtually irrelevant for the last ten years. During the 2005 election, which he lost to Evo, he resorted to scare tactics which proved to be empty. He put out ads with dramatic background music, in which actors posing as textile workers claimed that Evo’s win would scare off international buyers for their products. Nothing could be further from the truth, as Evo’s record to date has shown; even the IMF and the World Bank are praising him, which is pretty ironic since he sent them packing, figuring that homegrown solutions to reinvest gas revenues into the local economy (à la Chavecito) would do the trick better. And they did.
So now there’s nothing left for Tuto to keep himself relevant, except to snipe at Evo’s impressive results. 2005’s, for instance, was at the time the largest margin of popular support for any Bolivian presidential candidate, ever — and Evo’s support has only increased since then. And of course, to threaten to eat his watch.
Tuto, better stock up on hot sauce. And maybe a case of beer, too. You’re gonna need something to wash down those bitter, bitter words!