A majority of Colombian voters would vote for President
Alvaro Uribe if he decides to run again in May 2010, pollster Datexco showed in
a survey released Monday.
The nationwide poll of 1,200 people, taken September 2 and3, found that 54.5%
of voters would choose Uribe, slightly higher than the 49.8% who said the same
in July 30.
If Uribe weren’t running, former Defense Minister and Uribe ally Juan Manuel
Santos would come in first with 16.5% of the voting intentions, much lower than
the 23.8% voting intention he registered in July 30. He is followed by Fajardo
Earlier last week, Congress approved a bill to hold a referendum on whether to
allow presidents the option of a third term. Uribe, a popular president nearing
the end of his second term, has said he won’t decide whether he will run for a
third until after the referendum, but indications suggest it is very likely.
The Colombian referendum bill must be approved by the Constitutional?Court
before it is put to the people. If the proposal then secures majority support,
Uribe would be free to run in the May 2010 presidential elections.
Nilson Pinilla, president of the Constitutional Court, told newspaper El
Tiempo Monday that the country’s highest court would take between four to five
months to decide whether the congressional debates followed rules on procedure
and honored constitutional principles.
Pinilla warned that legislators have a limited competence to alter the
Uribe, who was first elected in 2002, became the first president in the
history of this Andean nation to seek reelection immediately after serving one
term in office. Thanks to Congress and the Constitutional Court, Uribe was
allowed to seek a second term in 2006. At the time, Uribe was reelected with 62%
of the vote. (Dow Jones)