The recall referendum in Venezuela has taken a dramatic turn. The National Electoral Council (CNE) of Venezuela has issued a stunning ruling. All 1.3 million people who signed the petition to have President Nicolas Maduro recalled must appear in-person at local election offices to confirm their identity. The reason this is so shocking is because the law previously noted only roughly 200,000 people were originally required to prove their identity per the law.
Expert Jose Manuel Gonzalez is crying foul about the change in rules. The CNE has long been considered overly sympathetic to Maduro and his party. Regardless, the ruling has to stand unless the courts intervene in some way. That is, if the courts can intervene in this matter.
The CNE, however, has shown there were scores of irregularities on the petition roles. Both children and dead persons were listed and invalidated. 600,000 signatures were invalidated in total, which is an extremely high number. So, CNE officials’ actions cannot be blamed totally on bias.
The possibility of the recall referendum going forward according to Gonzalez may very much be in doubt at this point. 1.3 million people would have to prove their identity between June 20 and June 24. That is a very small window for such a massive number of people. If numbers end up falling well below what is required to enact the recall referendum, then everything is sure to fall apart. Maduro would, obviously, remain in power.