Losing the pura vida?

The Christian Science Monitor has a piece on Costa Rica that discusses the disenchantment that voters have about politics in general and the February elections in particular.

Polling firms report that 32% of the population plans to abstain from the presidential election because of anger over “corruption, a lack of leadership, insensitivity to the average citizen, and unemployment.”  While the article tries to spin this as a new phenomena, citing “a much deeper and darker alienation this time around,” abstention was at least that high in the last two presidential elections (35% in 2006 and 32% in 2010).

The current president, Laura Chinchilla, only has a 9% approval rating as voters blame her for a variety of ills ranging from “collapsed highways, dengue outbreaks, and other calamities.”


Johnny Araya, current major of San José, has the lead in the presidential polls but citizens aren’t too thrilled with him either.  Apparently, the infrastructure and security of the capital city has greatly deteriorated under his 12 year tenure and people are unhappy with “his personal lifestyle (including five marriages).”  Given that he has the edge in polling so far, I guess not everyone is unhappy with him, or perhaps they consider him the least bad option.




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