After midnight, with 73% of votes counted, the Citizens Action (PAC – Partido Acción Ciudadana) candidate Luis Guillermo Solis had 30.7% of the votes, with the National Liberation (PLN – Partido Liberación Nacional) candidate Johnny Araya trailing with 29.6%, according to data from the Supreme Election Tribunal (TSE – Tribunal Supremo de Elecciones). The abstention rate was 31.7%.
After hearing the results, Solis called on his supporters to not falter in the fight to take corruption out of power.
“Many thanks for the happiness that has become the motor for this movement, which after today will define the political future of Costa Rica,” declared a euphoric Luis Guillermo Solis to an even more euphoric audience.
The crowd had still not begun to believe their success, after electoral polls had shown Solis not even in the top three places. Now they had won first place, following the elections on Sunday February 2.
For his part, Araya brought together members of his party and those who protect institutions, competitiveness and a more supportive country.
“There is no doubt that the results show that we haven’t sent clear enough signals to the public of what we want to change; that we want responsible change,” said Araya.
Elections in Nicoya, Nosara and Samara
Voting in Leonidas Briceño school, one of the most important polling locations in the Nicoya canton, happened as planned.
Nevertheless, several TSE officials agreed that the struggle to win votes had become a true fight. “Some party members are very tense and defensive,” explained Jackeline Zuñiga, an election assistant.
Maria Corrales, at 70 years old, explained that she lost her identity card because, “…one of the young women was rushing me and took my card, and I gave it up for lost,” she said.
The influx of voters in Nosara was constant, as the district has always had a low abstention rate. The PLN and Frente Amplio (Wide Front) mobilized the most people. There was a festive atmosphere and everything proceeded normally.
Although the National Liberation party was considered the favorite in Samara, as in other parts of the canton, Ample Front actually ended up receiving more votes at the tables in Samara center, although the real winner was absenteeism.
About 60% of the 1159 registered to vote in Samara center cast their ballot on election day. Two tables were set up at the school there, one for 600 of the voters and the other for 559. Both tables reported Ample Front as the winner, though not by much.
For example, at the table assigned 559 voters, 314 total voted, or 56%. Of these, 115 voted for Ample Front’s presidential candidate, Jose Maria Villalta, whereas 105 voted for Johnny Araya, National Liberation’s candidate. Ample Front also received more votes for their legislative candidates.