President of El Salvador Nayib Bukele is on track to handedly win reelection on Sunday.
Gustavo Flores-Macías is an expert in Latin American politics at Cornell University. He is able to dissect what a reelection of President Nayib Bukele would mean.
“President Nayib Bukele is likely to comfortably win reelection and his party could control the vast majority of seats in congress when El Salvador holds elections on Sunday, Feb. 4. His sky-high popularity is based on his government’s ability to turn the country from one of the most dangerous in the world to one with some of the lowest rates of violent crime in the Western Hemisphere – a feat that Bukele achieved through emergency powers that drastically curtailed civil liberties.
“If Bukele is reelected as comfortably as the polls suggest, it will be a clear sign that the cost in respect for human rights and checks on executive power has become secondary for Salvadorans compared to the dramatic gains in public safety. With ‘state of exception’ becoming increasingly common to address crime in Latin America, other leaders in the region will be taking note of Sunday’s election because of both the popularity and seeming effectiveness of Bukele’s iron fist measures.”