Facebook Instagram Twitter YouTube

Chile’s Latest Assault on Democracy: 12 Parties Will Be Forced to Dissolve

A dozen smaller parties will be excluded, by law, from participating in Chile’s elections. It’s more proof that the new Boric government is just more of the same.

La Izquierda Diario Chile

February 12, 2022
Facebook Twitter Share
A mass protest in Chile, part of the uprising across the country in late 2019.

Chile’s Servicio Electoral (the Electoral Service known as Servel), nominally independent from the government, has released a list of political parties that will have to dissolve for their failure in the recent national elections to obtain 5 percent of the votes in eight regions of the country, or not winning at least four seats in the country’s congress. This is a requirement imposed by the Constitutional Organic Law of Political Parties (Law 18.603, Article 57).

Without a doubt, this shows how the current electoral system in Chile works in favor of the traditional parties that have run Chile since the end of the Pinochet dictatorship 30 years ago, making institutionally invisible the position of thousands of workers who already feel unrepresented by the traditional parties. This step goes beyond the financial burden smaller parties face when they must compete with the traditional parties.

Among the parties that must dissolve are some that did win parliamentary seats, but that do not meet the specific requirements of the law. Similarly, parties with representatives on councils or in other positions will also be forced to dissolve.

The effect is to exclude from the electoral arena any representation of political views that differ from those of the traditional parties, creating a sort of monopoly of parties that have not only distributed political power among themselves, but have also done the same with the country’s wealth.

Dauno Tótoro, a leader of the Partido de Trabajadores Revolucionarios (PRT, Revolutionary Workers’ Party, Left Voice’s sister group in Chile), who was a candidate for deputy in last November’s elections, denounced the anti-democratic nature of the current electoral system, emphasizing the specific measures the law requires. He noted that dissolving parties prevents the growth of a Left that can question the current government and the next one, and also limits the free expression of organizations that had achieved legal status and now are deprived of their legality. 

The law, said Tótoro, maintains the framework established in the aftermath of the dictatorship, in which only two “conglomerates” can employ their legal powers as a party: the former Concertación and the Frente Amplio on the one hand, and the right-wing Chile Vamos on the other.1Translator’s note: The Cóncertacion coalition held the presidency from the time military rule ended until 2010. Frente Amplio (Broad Front) is a coalition that groups some left-wing parties and the Liberals; current Chilean president Gabriel Boric was one of its founders. Chile Vamos is the party of the Sebastián Piñera, who preceded Boric as president.

This imposition of the law reveals the Left mirage that has been created by the Frente Amplio, with Boric at the head as Chile’s new president along with the old Concertación. It has taken only a few words to demonstrate that nothing has really changed with the government.

First published in Spanish on February 12 in La Izquierda Diario Chile.

Translation by Scott Cooper

Notes[+]

Facebook Twitter Share

La Izquierda Diario Chile

Our Chilean sister site, part of the international network of La Izquierda Diario

Latin America

Indigenous demonstrators gather around burning road blockades while marching towards the capital Quito after a week of protests against the economic and social policies of President Guillermo Lasso, in Machachi, Ecuador June 20, 2022.

Ecuador’s Indigenous People Are Fighting Neoliberal Austerity in the Streets

The indigenous protests in Ecuador are bringing thousands of people to the streets to protest austerity.

Margarita Valencia

June 23, 2022

AMLO’s Dilemma and the Limits of the Pink Tide

It is essential to establish a clear definition of class character to understand AMLO’s government, taking into consideration the particular characteristics of its “progressivism” in its relationship with the mass movement and capital. Otherwise, one could lose one’s way in implementing socialist and revolutionary politics that genuinely express the historical interest of the oppressed and exploited.

Pablo Oprinari

June 21, 2022
Former rebel Gustavo Petro and his running mate Francia Marquez, celebrate before supporters after winning a runoff presidential election in Bogota, Colombia, Sunday, June 19, 2022.

Historic Defeat of the Right in Colombia’s Presidential Elections: What Are the Implications of Gustavo Petro’s Win?

The center-left candidate Gustavo Petro has defeated right-wing Rodolfo Hernández in Colombia’s presidential elections. The outcome of the election reflects the people’s hatred of the right, but Petro has little to offer the working classes of Colombia.

Milton D'León

June 20, 2022
Stretches of secondary fencing are topped with spirals of concertina wire along the U.S.-Mexico border near the San Ysidro Port of Entry in San Diego on Aug. 16, 2017.

Texas Governor Gregg Abbott Sent Miles of Razor Wire to Help Mexico Stop Immigrants from Reaching the U.S.

Republican Governor of Texas Greg Abbot sent barbed wire to Mexico to be used in Coahuila with the intention of stopping migration. This is just the latest attack in Mexico and the Untied States' coordinated war on immigrants

MOST RECENT

We Need Socialist Feminism. Join Bread & Roses

Faced with reactionary attacks from the Right and increasing economic and political crisis, we urgently need a feminism that fights for all the oppressed and exploited. We need a feminism that harnesses our power as those who make society run to fight for a better future. We need socialist feminism. Join Left Voice in building Bread & Roses today.

Left Voice

June 24, 2022

Unions, Left, and Activist Groups in New York City Organize Coalition and March in Response to the Supreme Court’s Decision to Overturn Abortion Rights

A new coalition of over 30 left groups, rank-and-file workers organizations and unions, and activists including Left Voice, Starbucks workers, teachers, socialist and housing justice organizations, and others have come together to organize a march and rally today in response to the Supreme Court decision overturning Roe v. Wade and to protest the attacks on abortion rights by the State and the Right.

Left Voice

June 24, 2022

Supreme Court Overturns Roe v. Wade. Organize, Mobilize and Fight Back.

Join Left Voice and a coalition of unions, left, activist, and reproductive rights organizations for a rally and march in New York City to defend the right to an abortion. Gather at 6:30 pm in Washington Square Park.

Left Voice

June 24, 2022
Members of Trotskyist organization Revolution Permanente at a protest.

Trotskyists in France Are Reconstituting a Fighting Revolutionary Left. There Are Important Lessons for the United States

The Far Left in France, which has grown complacent at best and has crossed the class line at worst, is being resuscitated with revolutionary politics thanks to the efforts of Révolution Permanente — which include launching a new organization. There are lessons for the United States in what has happened in France and in the opportunities to come.

Scott Cooper

June 23, 2022