San José, Costa Rica, since 1956

Majority Express Confidence in Election Results

A survey conducted two weeks after the polls closed on Feb. 7 found that 79.9 percent of Costa Ricans were confident in the honesty of the election results.

The leading candidate, Laura Chinchilla, won the presidential election by a landslide with 46.7 percent of the vote, besting her closest followers by 26 percent and 21 percent respectively; so few questioned the winner.

If there was any debate, it was whether Chinchilla truly did get as many votes as election results showed. According to Costa Rican election rules, if no candidate wins more than 40 percent of the vote, the election is forced into a second round.

The study, conducted by Borge and Associates, also showed that 88.3 percent of voters felt well-informed about election day and how to vote. Most voters – roughly 45.5 percent – got their information about the election process by means of the television, whereas only 3.5 percent relied on newspapers.

The poll was conducted via telephone between Feb. 20 and Feb. 25 and included 600 people over the age of 18.

Of those who said they didn’t vote, the majority (18.8 percent) said they were tired of politics, 12.8 percent said health conditions kept them from voting, 5.5 percent said they opposed the electoral system, 10.1 couldn’t get authorization from their work place to vote and 5.8 percent didn’t have a cédula (identification card).

–Chrissie Long

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