Source: Venezuela Analysis
At 9:35pm local time, three and a half hours after polls closed and with 94.2% of voted counted, Venezuela’s National Electoral Council announced that Venezuelans had voted 54.4% to 45.6% in favor of a constitutional amendment to eliminate the two-term limit on all elected office.
Chávez supporters celebrated the nearly 9-point victory margin with enthusiasm, as it will allow President Hugo Chávez to run for a third full term in 2012.
According to the CNE, abstention was relatively low, at 33%, with about 11 out 16 million registered voters voting, which is about two million more votes than in 2007, for the failed constitutional reform referendum that would have altered 69 articles of Venezuela’s constitution.
Chávez and his supporters had argued that the elimination of term limits is necessary to allow Chávez to govern for longer than the four years remaining in his term, in order to complete Venezuela’s transition to “Bolivarian Socialism.”