Thursday, January 1, 2015

Power And Control: Leftist Uruguay’s First Lady to Run for Mayor of Montevideo


MONTEVIDEO – Sen. Lucia Topolansky, the wife of outgoing Uruguayan President Jose Mujica, will run for mayor of Montevideo in the May 2015 elections, representatives of the governing leftist Broad Front coalition told Efe.

The 70-year-old Topolansky is a member of the People’s Participation Movement, or MPP, the largest voting bloc within the front, whose national executive committee decided on Tuesday to back the senator’s mayoral bid.

There are now two Broad Front candidates for mayor in Uruguay’s capital and largest city since the Socialist Party, another member of the coalition, has nominated Daniel Martinez for the job.

“Lucia has considered the situation and pondered if she would accept being a candidate under some conditions that we consider important,” MPP spokesman Alejandro Sanchez told Efe.

Among the conditions agreed to with Topolansky are mutual respect between the front’s candidates and that the future municipal Cabinet be staffed on the basis of experience and ability without making support at the polls contingent on future posts.

The intention is to provide voters with options while avoiding “butchery” within the coalition, Sanchez said.

Sanchez noted Topolansky’s long political career and “decision-making ability, her ability as a negotiator” always open to dialogue.

Topolansky “knows the real Montevideo because she’s in constant contact with people and that enables her to run a campaign and a city administration very close to the citizens,” Sanchez said.

Like her husband, Topolansky is a former Tupamaro guerrilla who spent over a decade as a political prisoner under the 1973-1985 military regime.

In May, Uruguayans will elect governors and councils in each of the country’s 19 provinces, and mayors and councils for the municipalities within the provinces.


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