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Venezuelans Elect to Keep Chavez in Power

August 20, 2004

Re "Venezuela's Chavez Defeats Recall; Foes Reject Results," Aug. 17: I am overjoyed by the overwhelming victory of Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez in defeating the recall attempt launched by his opponents. The Venezuelan people endured long hours in oppressive heat to cast their vote in support of a president who has made numerous reforms to improve the quality of life for the majority poor population, much to the chagrin of his wealthy opponents.

Numerous Latin American and Caribbean countries have already acknowledged and congratulated Chavez, but it pains me to know that my country, the U.S., is not among the well-wishers.

Why is it that when an unelected roving band of murderous outlaw thugs seize power, as we recently witnessed in Haiti, my country recognizes and acknowledges such a regime, yet when democracy prevails, we remain silent in suspicion?

True democracy has prevailed in Venezuela and the voice of the people has been heard. I hope that one day it shall prevail in my country as well.

Marianna Breton

Diamond Bar

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Venezuelan people stood in line for hours to vote. What does that say about the citizens of the U.S.? If they see a line, they "may come back later."

How about the press and both political parties saying more to get the people to vote, not all the negative stuff that turns voters off?

Richard W. Murphy

Redondo Beach

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