Latin American Weekly Report

29/10/2020 - Chilean voters overwhelmingly back new constitution

The referendum held on 25 October delivered an unequivocal result: by a majority of three out of four, Chile’s voters backed the idea of writing a new constitution. Their vote opens a complex two-year transition period where outcomes may be more difficult to predict.

Chile’s 14.7m voters were asked to answer two questions. The first was whether they approved the idea of changing the constitution (‘apruebo’) or whether they rejected it (‘rechazo’). They emphatically chose the ‘apruebo’ route, which was backed by 78% of votes, against 22% for ‘rechazo’. Those who rejected the idea of a new constitution implicitly supported a continuation of the status quo, where congress has made piecemeal changes to the 1980 constitution, drafted during the military dictatorship led by General Augusto Pinochet (1973-1990).

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