Bid for Power in Bolivia Is Just Another Reach for Autocracy

Article appeared in Human Rights WatchPresident Evo Morales of Bolivia seems obsessed with staying in power.

In 2016, he called a referendum on a constitutional amendment that would have eased term limits in the country’s Constitution and allowed him to run for a fourth time.

After 51 percent of the voters rejected the amendment, President Morales came up with a new plan. In September, his supporters in Congress brought a lawsuit in the Plurinational Constitutional Tribunal seeking to revoke the Constitution’s term limit.

Mr. Morales had already brought a lawsuit to the high court in 2013 to bypass the two-term limit. That time the constitutional court concluded that the president’s first term, from 2006 to 2010, did not count because it took place before the 2009 Constitution came into force. …

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During the last several decades, the United States has invested billions of dollars in trying to help the governments of Latin America and the Caribbean deliver better lives for their citizens. This has meant helping them increase internal security by combating the illicit growing and trafficking in narcotics and the activities of terrorist groups, as well as helping them to shore up their democratic and free market institutions.

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