Where did the 2.7 million new votes for Gustavo Petro come from Colombia’s presidential election
Over the past week before the second round of the Colombian presidential election, it has become an almost national sport to debate not only who will vote, but also who will win. Recent polls have left a picture of a tight tie, and every citizen, and every vote, had a say in how to break it. Many were betting on Petro, but few were betting on this remarkable growth. It became fashionable that Petro could not grow much larger. However, he added 2.7 million votes to the 8.5 he already got in the second round. This means that even if Rodolfo Hernandez Had he united the 11 million he promised on May 29 with the rapid total of his votes and the votes of the defeated traditional right (not that far: 10.5 million), he would have lacked another 200,000 to reach Petro. Turnout, which had already broken a first-round record, and is the highest since 1974, rose to an all-time high of 58%. Where did these new sounds that put Petro on the path to Nariño’s house come from? The first answer guide in Map of the municipality of Colombia by municipality.
The geographic pattern of voting in a country is usually one of the Andean centers shifted to the right and the coastal fringes shifting center or left. But the difference between the first and the second for Petro introduces some nuances in this scheme: it is clear that the largest proportional increases are concentrated in certain more specific regional corridors. The Caribbean coast of the provinces of Sucre, Bolivar, Atlantico and Magdalena stands out, with a strip marked by this section of the Ruta del Sol that forms a regional semi-continuum articulated around the cities of Cartagena, Barranquilla and Santa Marta along with the peri-urban areas. Participation in that part of the country was at low levels in the first round, so the boost in strength was given as one of the necessary additions the Petro campaign required to grow. But what is even more surprising are the other areas of increase: the interior of the Pacific regions, from El Tambo (Cauca) to southern Caldas inland and Quibdo (the capital of Choco) towards the northwest. This includes the capital region of Cali, as well as Suarez, hometown France Marquis, who led a regional campaign linked to his history of activism in the region. Surprisingly enough, he was able to add votes in an area where he had already increased his influence in the first round.
After a white stigma haunts the conservative heart of Antioquia, the country’s most right-wing voting district in recent decades has turned purple in its north, a section of the department with disparate problems (more impoverished and violent) that rocks It seems to have taken advantage of it, as in other specific points (Tomaco points, La Macarena, on the border with Venezuela). Not so the central corridor of Cundinamarca and Boyaca from Bogotá to the northeast, a quiet and somewhat prosperous region that blends agriculture with the growth of medium and small towns. At those specific points, the former governor Boyako supported Green color Carlos Amaya to Rodolfo Hernandez did not prevent the left’s improvements.
This polka dot map indicates a mixture of different campaign strategies on the ground converging into one: be competitive where the competition was stronger. This is evidenced by the inverted U-shaped relationship that exists between the growth of each Petro city between the first and second rounds reflected on the map, and the margin enjoyed by the winner in the first round compared to the total Vico Gutierrez and Rodolfo Hernandez, who participated in the swearing-in vote. It turns out that Petro rose where his fringe was, but it was lower.
That is: the regional campaign is rooted in the national idea of polarization to guide the vote towards victory. It is possible that the sense of parity during the campaign, that anything could happen, and so every vote counted, helped reinforce this idea. Especially in places where this general picture can contrast with what can be observed among friends and neighbours.
But it has also succeeded in environments where such knowledge is difficult to assimilate to society as a whole, that is, in large cities. In the top ten, Petro added one of the 2.7 million new votes. The four with the most additions were enough to place the 700,000 advantage that ended up separating him from Rodolfo.
The urban version of the analysis is consistent with the map as a whole, and also with the correlation graph: Barranquilla was the large city with the most relative growth, and also the one in the inverted U peak in the relationship between competition tension and increase, and of course, is the reference core in the Caribbean corridor (side Together with its neighbor Soledad, with which it merges into a single urban chain and is also growing exponentially).
By increasing focus and decreasing detail, absolute growth by department excluding capital (which alone contributed nearly half a million new votes) completes the view. At this level of analysis, the Caribbean was the largest contributor to growth, closely followed by the Pacific region. The sums in the Antioquia/Igei cafeteria and the rest of the central lands of the country are, in fact, equal to each other.
One doesn’t add 2.7 million votes over 8.5, which was already considered a sort of temporary cap without combining the different methods, and the data presented here shows that there is more than one way to explain the increases that led Petro to the presidency. But it seems hard to achieve without at least several of them: renewed urban power, a landing in a series of specific territorial enclaves that combine their historically special regions with other foreign ones, and the ability to transform a difficult region’s killer outcome into new voices.
Subscribe here To the newsletter EL PAÍS about Colombia and receive all the informative keys to current affairs in the country.