Chile: divided expectations for Sunday’s constitutional plebiscite

CHILI. Chileans are preparing to go to the polls this Sunday, December 17, to vote on the text of a new Political Constitution of the Republic. The plebiscite, which is mandatory for all citizens over 18 years of age, will mark the end of a constituent process that began in 2020, after the social protests that shook the country.

Opinion polls show that support for the text proposed by the Constitutional Council is divided, with a technical tie between those in favor and those against. A survey conducted by the polling company PARTNER 305 showed that 48% of Chileans would vote in favor of the new Constitution, while 47% would vote against it.

Those who support the proposed text highlight its transformative nature, which incorporates new social rights, such as the right to health, education and housing, and that it strengthens the rights of indigenous peoples. Those who oppose the text, for their part, argue that it is too radical and could lead to greater public spending and an increase in bureaucracy.

The result of the plebiscite will have a significant impact on the future of Chile. If the text is approved, it will become the country’s new Constitution, replacing the 1980 Constitution, which was drafted during the dictatorship of Augusto Pinochet. If it is rejected, the country will continue to be governed by the 1980 Constitution.

Some 15.4 million Chileans are required to go to the polls to vote for or against a proposed new Constitution. The plebiscite will take place in more than 5,800 voting locations throughout the country.

Everything ready for the plebiscite

The Chilean electoral authorities, headed by the Electoral Service (Servel), are prepared for the plebiscite this Sunday, December 17, which will decide the future of the country’s Constitution.

Servel deployed more than 200,000 officials to ensure the proper functioning of the vote. These officials will be in charge of setting up the voting locations, receiving the votes and counting them.

Servel is ready to ensure that the plebiscite is carried out in an orderly and transparent manner. The electoral body hopes that citizen participation will be high and that the result of the vote will be respected by everyone.

The result of the plebiscite will be known on the same day as the vote, starting at 8:00 p.m. (local time).

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FOUNTAIN: BBC, El País, CNN, Diario Las Americas