Saturday, November 1, 2008

US elections? Latin America indifferent

That's the word from a new poll of people across Latin America on next Tuesday's elections, where two-thirds of those surveyed say they don't care which candidate wins since it will not have a great affect US-Latin American relations.

It's a surprising result considering how tuned into the US elections the rest of the world seems to be. But the poll conducted in 18 countries across the region by Chile-based Latinobarometro found that 29% didn't think either candidate was a good choice, while 31% said they didn't know enough about either Barack Obama or John McCain to offer an opinion. Among the rest Obama was a clear choice beating McCain 29% to 8%.

According to Latinobarometro's Director Marta Lagos the apathy expressed in the poll was a reflection of the United States fading influence in a region once considered its backyard. "They believe that the U.S. election will not produce any change in Latin America," Lagos said. "The most important finding, I think, is that the United States is losing power in Latin America."

Obama had his strongest support in the Dominican Republic and Costa Rica, while McCain did best in Columbia and El Salvador.
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