Latin America

How the pandemic furthers a right-wing agenda in Latin America

Growing poverty and violence may see the democratic advances of previous decades wiped out as zero-tolerance policies grow more popular among voters

How the pandemic furthers a right-wing agenda in Latin America
Strong hand approaches to violence tend to grow more popular in Latin America. Photo: Clicks de Mexico/Shutterstock

Latin America saw an electoral “Super Sunday” on April 11 when Ecuador and Peru headed to the polls, with left-wing candidates the slight favourites in both countries. Results confounded expectations as conservatives took the upper hand.

In Ecuador, conservative banker Guillermo Lasso beat young left-leaning economist Andrés Arauz. The rise in violence in the country, which Mr. Lasso called his “top priority”, played a part in the right’s victory. With the homicide rate increasing from 6.8 to 7.7 per 100,000 inhabitants over the period 2019-2020, the neoliberal banker promised a “zero tolerance” policy against violent crime. It seems to...

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