teleSUR´s correspondent Camila Escalante reports that Arce´s project remains as the electorate´s first choice despite attempts by local media outlets to undermine the extent of MAS´s popularity.
A survey published today by Your vote counts, the largest carried out in cities and rural areas, shows that Luis Arce leads the poll with 33.6 percent of preference while the Citizen Community party´s right-wing candidate Carlos Mesa slightly upgraded with 26.8 percentage points. This, out of 15.537 people surveyed in 234 municipalities of the nine departments.
However, Escalante has pointed out that according to Your vote counts results, "21.6% of the responses in this voter intention poll wouldn't factor into the actual vote" as the election is decided on valid votes only.
In this sense, Escalante explains that "this presentation of results obscures reality in an attempt to minimize public perception of the extend of Arce’s lead over Mesa as these figures include blank and null response as well as undecided respondents."
New: Latest poll shows Luis Arce leading by 7 points. This presentation of results obscures reality in an attempt to minimize public perception of the extend of Arce’s lead over Mesa as these figures include blank and null response as well as undecided respondents. pic.twitter.com/CuBlAc23MY
On the other hand, according to the projection of the valid votes by the same intention poll, Luis Arce´s popularity would increase to 42.9 percent, Mesa's to 34.2 percent, and Camacho's to 17.8 percent.
Escalante reports that "all of the media is working to convince voters that Mesa has already won the election. The public is being told that the vote will go to a second round and that if the MAS wins by in the first round, it can only be by fraud."
According to Bolivia's electoral system, any presidential candidate who reaches more than 50 percent of the validly cast votes, or a minimum of 40 percent, with a difference of 10 percent compared to the second most voted candidacy, would stop a second round.
MAS opposition right-wing forces have already tried to stop the socialist party from an expected victory as other politicians tried to annul MAS from the electoral race but failed. In the latest attempt to discredit the Movement Towards Socialism ahead of a first-round victory, Bolivia's Justice Vice-Minister Guido Melgar announced a complaint against Luis Arce for illicit enrichment.
On the other hand, Arce warned the international community of a wave of violence by right-wing groups as coup government officials have publicly said that they won't accept a MAS victory.