Venezuelan dictator Nicolás Maduro claimed on Tuesday that the recent election of Jair Bolsonaro in Brazil and other right-leaning leaders will eventually trigger a “new wave” of leftist governments across Latin America.
“Right-wing neoliberal projects in Latin America and the Caribbean are unviable, and they are going to provoke the resurgence of a new wave of popular transformations,” Maduro said in remarks released by the state television channel VTV. “Jair Bolsonaro, who just assumed his mandate today, will follow the same path, and Macri in Argentina is a disowned man who can not go out on the street.”
Maduro also referenced Colombian leader Iván Duque, falsely claiming he has “gone from 80 percent of support to 80 percent repudiation,” adding that Colombians are “on the streets asking to him to resign” from the presidency.
He also noted that Latin America has become a “disputed territory” between the political forces of the right and left and that the region is currently going through “a process of regression” that will lead to the rise “revolutionary” governments.
“Every process of regression brings within itself the internal forces that fight it,” he said, admitting that the Latin American left is currently in “a difficult situation.”
The continent’s political landscape has seen a sharp shift rightwards in recent years, bringing to an end an era of socialist dominance dubbed the “Pink Tide” after hard-left governments wreaked havoc on their respective economies.
Leaders such as Hugo Chávez in Venezuela, Cristina Fernández de Kirchner in Argentina, Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva in Brazil, Evo Morales in Bolivia, Rafael Correa in Ecuador, José Mujica in Uruguay, and others ruled their respective countries on strict socialist policies that ultimately sunk their economies and triggered a regional backlash to the ideology.
In 2018, both Brazil and Chile have moved towards more conservative leaders in Jair Bolsonaro and Sebastián Piñera, while the election of Mauricio Macri in 2015 marked a significant change from the leadership of Kirchner.
A coalition of like-minded governments have has joined together to increase pressure on leftist regimes such as Maduro’s Venezuela and Daniel Ortega’s Nicaragua.