Peru’s Democracy Is at a Breaking Point

Gabriela Camacho y Paolo Sosa Villagarcia

Publicado en Foreign Policy el 15/07/2021

Pedro Castillo, who takes office this month, will likely face a renewed governability crisis as president.

Peru’s longest period of democracy yet is in danger of coming to a painful close. Over the past few years, politicians have engaged in near-constant takedowns of opponents—including impeachments and judicial targeting—and obstruction of governance. This has contributed to the public perception that democracy is not working, either because it does not produce concrete results or because all politicians are corrupt. Unsurprisingly, a large percentage of voters in general elections this year chose populist, anti-system candidates from all sides of the spectrum. In the end, the two candidates who made it to the presidential runoff barely got 33 percent of the vote during the first round. As in previous elections, a significant group of Peruvians simply chose to leave their ballots blank; yet this time, blank votes were the second “most voted” option.

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