President Alvaro Uribe‘s most loyal supporter in Congress, Partido De La U, wants coalition partners to help pick an alternative candidate to the current president in case Uribe is not allowed or willing to run in the 2010 presidential election.
In an interview with newspaper El Espectador, Luis Carlos Restrepo, ex-peace commisioner and president of coalition party De La U, said he is optimistic that the referendum will be deemed constitutional by the Contitutional Court and that voters will support the constitutional change needed for Uribe’s big for a third term. Restrepo is adamant that Uribe will step forward when a new re-election is allowed.
However, the party president thinks the there should be alternative candidates from within the coalition parties ready to step up. “I feel that the Conservative Party shares our purpose and both parties could postulate a candidate.” Restrepo believes the best exponents of Uribe’s policies should stay active in the political arena.
Nevertheless, Restrepo also criticized the term “state of opinion” that Uribe has argued is as important as the rule of law. Restrepo is not convinced that “we can talk bout the State of opinion as a superior state than the Rule of Law, which for me continues to be the proper instance. But I understand the concerns of the President to respond to the public opinion and that she is a sort of superial tribunal.”
Colombia’s presidential elections will be held in May 2010. President Alvaro Uribe, who so far refused to explicitly speak out on his ambitions next year, can only run for the Presidency allows him to in a controversial referendum.