El rumbo democrático: Ecuador's First-Round Presidential Elections

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On Sunday, August 20, Ecuadorians went to the polls to vote in a snap election clouded by political upheaval, violence, and uncertainty.  The campaign was marred especially by the assassination of vocal anticorruption candidate Fernando Villavicencio on August 9. With no candidate on August 20 securing the margin needed to win outright, Ecuador’s period of political uncertainty will stretch on further, and with it, important questions of security, democracy, and the future of U.S.-Ecuador relations.

In this special episode, Christopher Hernandez-Roy sits down with Sebastián Hurtado, President and Founder of the Quito-based political risk consultancy Prófitas. Together, they unpack key trends in and around the first round election, including the performance of key candidates, the overlay of insecurity and entrenched corruption, and what to expect from the run-off on October 15. They also delve into the composition of the new National Assembly, and two key ballot initiatives on environmental issues.