Election Watch

Issue Date July 2003
Volume 14
Issue 3
Page Numbers 181-83
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(March-June 2003)

Argentina: In April 27 first-round presidential balloting, the two leading candidates represented two wings of the Peronists: former president Carlos Menem of the Front for Loyalty Alliance/Union of the Democratic Center, who won 24 percent of the vote; and Néstor Kirchner of the Front for Victory Alliance, who won 22 percent. Ricardo López Murphy of the Radical-affiliated Federal Alliance Movement won 16 percent. A second round was scheduled for May 18, but Menem withdrew his candidacy on May 14 and, in accordance with Argentina’s electoral law, Kirchner was named president by default.

Armenia: Parliamentary elections were held on May 25. Of the 75 seats chosen by party list, the ruling Republican Party (HHK) won 23. The opposition Justice bloc won 14, and the populist Country of Law (OE) 12, with the remainder scattered among three other parties. Of the 56 seats elected in single-mandate constituencies, HHK candidates won 9, OE won 8, and Justice won 3. International observers noted that while the elections fell short of international standards, they showed procedural improvements in comparison with the February 19 presidential voting.

Belize: In elections to the 29-seat House of Representatives held on March 5, the ruling People’s United Party won 53 percent and 22 seats. The United Democratic Party won 46 percent and the remaining 7 seats.

Benin: In March 30 elections to the 83-member National Assembly, the Presidential Movement coalition won 56 percent of the vote and 52 seats. Its leading members are the Union for the Benin of the Future (31 seats), the African Movement for Development and Progress (9 seats), and the Key Force (5 seats).Opposition parties won 43 percent of the vote and 31 seats, with the Party for the Rebirth of Benin winning 15 and the Democratic Renewal Party, 11. [End Page 181]

El Salvador: In legislative elections held on March 16, the opposition Farabundo Martí Front for National Liberation won 31 of 84 seats, the Nationalist Republican Alliance (ARENA) won 29, and the Party of National Conciliation won 14. The Christian-Democratic Party and the United Democratic Center won 5 seats each. Turnout was around 40 percent.

Latvia: Presidential balloting was scheduled for June 21. Results will be reported in a future issue.

Jordan: Parliamentary elections were scheduled for June 17. Results will be reported in a future issue.

Montenegro: In a third-round presidential election held on May 11, Filip Vujanović of the Democratic List for a European Montenegro won 63 percent, and Miodrag Zivković of the Liberal Alliance won 31 percent. Turnout was 48 percent, but the 50 percent turnout requirement that caused the previous two rounds (held on December 22 and February 9) to be invalidated had been abandoned for the third round.

Nigeria: For details on the April parliamentary and presidential elections, see the essay by Peter M. Lewis on pp. 131-44 of this issue.

Paraguay: In an April 27 presidential election, Nicanor Duarte Frutos of the National Republican Association-Colorado Party (ANR) was elected with 37 percent of the vote, while Julio César Franco of the Authentic Radical Liberal Party (PLRA) won 24 percent, Pedro Fadul of the new Patria Querida Movement (MPQ) won 21 percent, and Guillermo Sánchez Guffanti of the National Union of Ethical Citizens (UNACE), 13 percent. Legislative elections were held on the same day: In the 80-seat Chamber of Deputies, the ANR received 34 seats, PLRA received 21, and PQ and UNACE received 10 seats each. In the 45-seat Chamber of Senators, the ANR won 16 seats, PLRA won 12, and PQ and UNACE won 8 and 7, respectively.

Yemen: In April 27 parliamentary elections, the ruling General People’s Congress won 238 of 301 seats, and the Yemeni Congregation for Reform won 46 seats. International observers noted that while the elections were a significant step forward, they were marred by violence, coercive measures on election day, and significant incidents of underage voting.

(July 2003-June 2004)

Afghanistan: legislative, June 2004

Algeria: presidential, April 2004 [End Page 182]

Antigua and Barbuda: legislative, March 2004

Azerbaijan: presidential, October 2003

Cambodia: parliamentary, 27 July 2003

Central African Republic: parliamentary, November 2003

Croatia: parliamentary, 2 April 2004

Dominica: presidential, October 2003

Dominican Republic: presidential, 16 May 2004

El Salvador: presidential, March 2004

Equatorial Guinea: parliamentary, March 2004

Georgia: parliamentary, 2 November 2003

Guatemala: presidential/legislative, November 2003

Guinea:  presidential, December 2003

Guinea-Bissau: parliamentary, 6 July 2003

Indonesia: parliamentary, 5 April 2004

Kuwait: parliamentary, July 2003

Liberia: presidential/legislative, 14 October 2003

Maldives: presidential, October 2003

Marshall Islands: parliamentary, November 2003

Mauritania: presidential, December 2003

Mexico: legislative, 6 July 2003

Panama:  presidential/legislative, May 2004

Philippines: presidential/legislative, 10 May 2004

Russia: presidential, 14 March 2004; parliamentary, 14 December 2003

Rwanda: presidential, August 2003; parliamentary, September 2003

South Korea: parliamentary, April 2004

Swaziland: parliamentary, September 2003

Taiwan: presidential, March 2004; legislative, December 2003

Thailand: parliamentary, March 2004

Election Watch provides reports of recently decided and upcoming elections in developing nations and the postcommunist world. Elections in nondemocratic nations are included when they exhibit a significant element of genuine competition or, in the case of upcoming elections, when they represent an important test of progress toward democracy. Some of the data for Election Watch come from the International Foundation for Election Systems (IFES), a private, nonprofit education and research foundation that assists in monitoring, supporting, and strengthening the mechanics of the electoral process worldwide. For additional information, contact: IFES, 1101 15th Street, N.W., Suite 300, Washington, DC 20005; (202) 828-8507; www.ifes.org.