The Rendon Group
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Peruvian Presidential Election Runoffs: Pedro Pablo Kuczynski Defeats Keiko Fujimori
Presidential candidate Pedro Pablo Kuczynski looks out at his supporters during a rally on the outskirts of Lima, Peru on 03MAY16. (Associated Press)
This week’s snapshot focuses on Peru’s 05JUN presidential election runoffs following the first round on 08APR. In the tightest presidential contest since 1962, liberal economist Pedro Pablo Kuczynski (aka “PPK”) claimed victory over Keiko Fujimori, a populist and daughter of jailed former President Alberto Fujimori. During the campaign, Mr. Kuczynski portrayed himself as a stable alternative to Ms. Fujimori, whom he accused of being eager to return to her father’s authoritarianism. However, Mr. Kuczynski may have a hard time fulfilling his goals–which include investing in large infrastructure and education projects while lowering sales taxes–as Ms. Fujimori’s party, Popular Force, won a large congressional majority in the election’s first round. At age 77, the former Wall Street banker and finance minister will be the country’s oldest president at the time of taking office.
News summary of events during the week of 07JUN16 – 13JUN16
- 05JUN: Peruvians voted in a tight presidential election that some perceive as a referendum on the legacy of imprisoned ex-President Alberto Fujimori’s authoritarian rule in the 1990s. (AP)
- 06JUN: Ms. Fujimori was narrowly trailing Mr. Kuczynski as votes were tallied. (Washington Post)
- 07JUN: Foreign-based votes, which represent 4 percent of the electorate, were due to arrive in Peru for tallying. (Duetsche Welle)
- 08JUN: Peruvians waited to learn who their next president will be, as ex-Wall Street banker Pedro Pablo Kuczynski’s camp called his lead insurmountable and controversial rival Keiko Fujimori insisted she still had a shot. (AFP)
- 08JUN: With 99.5 percent of the ballots counted, the Oxford-trained economist known as “PPK” maintained his razor-thin edge over Fujimori: 50.12 percent to 49.88 percent. (AFP)
- 09JUN: Ms. Fujimori held out until the last ballot was counted, dashing front-runner Pedro Pablo Kuczynski’s hopes she might concede. (AFP)
- 10JUN: Ms. Fujimori conceded defeat to Mr. Kuczynski in Peru’s tightest presidential election in decades, but she promised in her speech that her party would make up a “watchful” opposition during his government. (Reuters)
- 10JUN: In her first press conference since the final results were announced, Fujimori said, “In the second-round our opponent was joined by the political power of the outgoing government, economic powers and media power.” (Reuters)
- 10JUN: President-elect Pedro Pablo Kuczynski said at a press conference that it was too early to discuss whether he would make any “political alliances” in forming his government. (Xinhua)
Sample of Twitter handles tweeting about the Peruvian presidential election
- @fbajak – Frank Bajak, Investigative correspondent, Associated Press. Former Andes news chief
- @ruedareport – Manuel Rueda, Correspondent for Fusion, the ABC /Univision venture. Focus on the Andean countries, Venezuela to Peru.
- @davidluhnow – David Luhnow, Latin America Editor for The Wall Street Journal/Dow Jones.
- @yoelsano – Yoel Sano, Head of Global Political Risk at @BMIResearch, a Fitch Group company.
- @DubeRyan – Ryan Dube, Reporter for The Wall Street Journal and Dow Jones Newswires in Peru.
Sample of Third Party Validators regarding the Peruvian presidential election
Steve Levitsky, Harvard University political scientist who has spent two decades studying Peru
“This was a real shock to her…She didn’t plan for this scenario. She and her supporters all expected to win for the last five years.”
- ‘Keiko Fujimori concedes defeat in Peru presidential vote’, Washington Post, 10JUN16
Eric Farnsworth, vice president of the Council of the Americas and Americas Society
“The closeness of the vote is clearly indicative that when people took a hard look at voting for Keiko they pulled back…The attacks that PPK and others had made…really began to strike home.”
- ‘Pedro Pablo Kuczynski to Claim Victory in Peru’s Presidential Election,’ Wall Street Journal, 09JUN16
Eduardo Dargent, political scientist at Pontifical Catholic University, Lima
“What worries me most is that he might maintain a technocratic style that makes governing a difficult task.”
- ‘Pedro Kuczynski Declares Victory Over Keiko Fujimori for Peru Presidency,’ New York Times, 09JUN16
Katie Micklethwaite, senior Latin America analyst at consultancy Verisk Maplecroft
“His party has just 18 seats in Peru’s 130-member Congress, which leaves him politically isolated from the start…Keiko Fujimori’s Fuerza Popular party has a majority of seats in Congress, giving them the power to block Kuczynski’s policy initiatives. Their record under the outgoing Humala administration indicates they are likely to do just that.”
- ‘Former World Bank economist wins knife-edge Peru election,’ Financial Times, 09JUN16
Sam Wang, Research Associate at the Council on Hemispheric Affairs
“Kuczynski will likely have to compromise on his policies, such as giving tax breaks to corporations, in order to move his legislative agenda forward, and he may also have to accommodate some of Keiko’s controversial stances, such as her support for illegal mining in the Amazon.”
- ‘Peruvian Presidential Election: Results And Outlooks – Analysis,’ Eurasia Review, 12JUN16
Sample of open source research conducted by TRG analysts related to the Peruvian presidential election
- Peru’s president-elect Kuczynski refuses to discuss political alliances
Media: Xinhua (China)
Date: 10 June 2016
LIMA, June 10 (Xinhua) — Peru’s president-elect, Pedro Pablo Kuczynski, said Friday at a press conference that it was too early to discuss whether he would make any “political alliances” in forming his government.
“It is very premature to speak of the political alliances of the members of the cabinet,” said Kuczynski, who will take over from President Ollanta Humala on July 28.
Kuczynski won a tight victory over his rival, Keiko Fujimori, with just 50.12 percent of the vote against her 49.88 percent from the election on June 5. Despite this close contest and after initial rumblings from her camp that she would contest the result, Fujimori announced on Friday afternoon that she recognized Kuczynski’s victory.
- In sour concession speech, Peru’s Fujimori vows to lead opposition
Byline: Mitra Taj
Date: 10 June 2016
LIMA (Reuters) – Keiko Fujimori conceded defeat on Friday to Pedro Pablo Kuczynski in Peru’s tightest presidential election in decades, but she warned that her rightwing populist party would be a force of opposition during his term.
Fujimori, the 41-year-old daughter of Peru’s jailed ex-authoritarian President Alberto Fujimori, said the centrist former investment banker Kuczynski had only scraped together a narrow victory with the support of “promoters of hate.”
- Peru elects neo-liberal Kuczynski to be its new president
Media: Deutsche Presse-Agentur (DPA)
Byline: Gonzalo Ruiz Tovar
Date: 09 June 2016
Keiko Fujimori conceded defeat to Pedro Pablo Kuczynski Friday in Peru’s presidential election, promising a “responsible opposition” for his five-year term.
Liberal economist Kuczynski narrowly beat Fujimori, a right-wing populist who is the daughter of imprisoned former president Alberto Fujimori, in Peru’s presidential run-off held Sunday.
Kuczynski emerged the winner with 50.12 per cent of the vote, while Fujimori, 41, garnered 49.88 per cent.
- Peru’s long wait for next president drags on
Media: Agence France-Presse (AFP)
Date: 08 June 2016
Lima, June 8, 2016 (AFP) – Peruvians waited Wednesday to learn who their next president will be, as ex-Wall Street banker Pedro Pablo Kuczynski’s camp called his lead insurmountable and controversial rival Keiko Fujimori insisted she still had a shot.
Three days after Sunday’s runoff election, the race to lead one of Latin America’s fastest-growing economies was still too close to officially call, even though 99.5 percent of the ballots had been counted.
- Top challenge for Peru’s new president: the Fujimoris
Media: Agence France-Presse (AFP)
Date: 11 June 2016
Lima, June 11, 2016 (AFP) – Keiko Fujimori may have lost Peru’s presidential election, but her party’s majority in Congress and her brother’s political ambitions guarantee years of governing drama for winner Pedro Pablo Kuczynski.
Kuczynski defeated Fujimori by such a razor-thin margin in the June 5 run-off that she conceded defeat only five days after the vote.