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Weekly Report - 18 November 2021 (WR-21-46)

CHILE: Boric and Kast neck-and-neck ahead of first round

Chileans go to the polls on 21 November to elect their next president and congressional representatives. Coming two years after mass protests over socio-economic grievances shook the country, eventually leading to the current re-drafting of the constitution by a popularly elected constituent assembly, this election has been described as the country’s most critical since the return to democracy. Polls suggest that the far-right candidate, José Antonio Kast from the Partido Republicano (PLR), and left-winger Gabriel Boric, running for the Apruebo Dignidad coalition, will win the first round and face each other in a run-off vote on 19 December. But electoral rules in Chile impose an opinion poll ‘blackout’ in the two weeks prior to the vote, and developments over the last fortnight, as well as voter behaviour on the day, could unexpectedly shift the outcome.

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