Libertarian Candidate May Force a Runoff in Costa Rica

Posted by Juan Carlos Hidalgo

A new poll published today by Costa Rica’s daily La Nación shows that Libertarian presidential candidate Otto Guevara has 30% of support among likely voters, trailing the candidate of the incumbent social democrat party Laura Chinchilla, who has 43% support. The news here is that in just two months, Guevara has increased his share of the vote by 18 percentage points, while Chinchilla’s share has collapsed by 20 percentage points during the same period.

The elections are scheduled for February 7th, and if neither of the candidates reaches the 40% threshold, there would be a runoff on April 4th. Given the trend, it is very likely that Guevara might force a runoff with Chinchilla in April. However, if Chinchilla’s rapid decline continues and Guevara captures more independent and undecided voters, he could still pull a surprising victory in February.

Guevara is a capital “L” Libertarian. His main issue during the campaign has been to get tough on crime (Costa Ricans’ main concern, according to polls). His economic platform is consistently free market: he proposes to abandon the colón and adopt the U.S. dollar as the official currency, he wants to unilaterally liberalize trade, he is calling for the implementation of a flat tax, and promotes an aggressive deregulation agenda. Moreover, he wants to introduce more competition in health care (currently a government single payer system) and education. On the international front, he has said that he would use international pulpits such as the UN and the Organization of American States to criticize Washington’s War on Drugs and propose sensible alternatives to international drug policy.

19 thoughts on “Libertarian Candidate May Force a Runoff in Costa Rica

  1. Danny S

    I am extremely impressed. I think I remember Don Rasmussen claiming that the Libertarians in Costa Rica had a real shot at the presidency this year, and unfortunately I couldn’t quite believe it at that time (they were polling much lower back then, maybe 6%?) I did see lots of room to grow, but this is unbelievable. Great job down there!

  2. John C

    I remember reading about these guys in LP News back in 2000 or 2002 or something. Then I never heard much more about them. I thought I read something about them not being libertarians anymore.

  3. Mik Robertson

    @7 You don’t consider the recovery of El Salvador from the civil war to be a success story?

  4. Mik Robertson

    @9 Yes! How could someone vote against a small furry creature like that!

    @11 They get those huge pelts of of those little animals?

  5. paulie Post author


    Chinchillas are crepuscular rodents, slightly larger than ground squirrels, native to the Andes mountains in South America. Along with their relatives, viscachas, they belong to the family Chinchillidae.

    The animal (whose name literally means “little Chincha”) is named after the Chincha people of the Andes, who once wore its soft and dense fur.[1] By the end of the 19th century, chinchillas had become quite rare due to hunting for their fur. Most chinchillas currently used by the fur industry for clothing and other accessories are farm-raised.[2]


    The international trade in chinchilla fur goes back to the 16th century. The fur from chinchillas is popular in the fur trade due to its extremely soft feel, because they have about 60 hairs sprouting from each hair follicle. The color is usually very even, which makes it ideal for small garments or the lining of large garments, though some large garments can be made entirely from the fur. A single, full-length coat made from chinchilla fur may require as many as 150 pelts, as chinchillas are relatively small.[10] This fact led to the extinction of one species, and put serious pressure on the other two. Though wild chinchillas are no longer hunted for their fur, domestic chinchillas are still bred for this use.[11]

    Chinchilla (disambiguation)
    From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
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    Chinchilla usually refers to a particular species of fur-bearing mountain rodent native to South America. It may also refer to:

    * A type of fur coloring in cats
    * The Chinchilla rat
    * Any of three breeds of Chinchilla rabbit:

    * American Chinchilla
    * Standard Chinchilla
    * Giant Chinchilla

    * Shire of Chinchilla, a Former Local Government Area of Queensland
    * Chinchilla, Queensland, a town within the Shire of Chinchilla
    * Chinchilla de Monte-Aragón, a municipality in Albacete, Castile-La Mancha, Spain.
    * Chinchilla (band), a heavy metal band

  6. The Last Conservative

    And I am sure that Che Guevara would be unhappy about his distant cousin Otto being a libertarian. It doesn’t matter, libertarians are still commies anyway, because they don’t support the rebirth of true conservatism.

  7. Mojo

    The Last Conservative’s is truly a confused post. Libertarianism is the polar opposite of Communism. It is not possible for political philsophies to be more different. Your post displays your staggering ignorance.

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