Fraud in Peru? Conservative-populist Keiko Fujimori was ahead in vote until a sudden late-night direction switch

In another piece of sour news out of South America, Peru's populist-conservative candidate, Keiko Fujimori, has seen her election lead suddenly vanish from the vote count that came of Sunday's election.

According to Reuters:

Peruvian socialist Pedro Castillo widened his lead against right-wing rival Keiko Fujimori in the country’s presidential vote on Monday, but she said she will not concede yet and alleged “irregularities,” although without showing much proof.

The official count from Sunday's election showed outsider candidate Castillo with 50.3% and Fujimori on 49.7%, with around 95% of the vote counted. The leftist candidate had trailed overnight, but started to take the lion's share of ballots as the count progressed, on the back of a late surge of rural votes.

"There's a clear intention to boycott the will of the people," Fujimori said at a press conference, in which she showed social media videos to back her claims, and accused supporters of Castillo of stealing votes. She also asked her base to bring forth new allegations, if they exist, on social media.

Castillo's party, Free Peru, responded on Twitter that it "rejected" the allegations.

Castillo, who's a hard-left Marxist who wants to nationalize Peru's copper and other industries, and all his Marxist-Leninist minions, wouldn't dream of such a thing, you see.

Yet when he was ahead, he said Keiko was cheating, and leftists would have to "defend the vote" according to the Reuters report.  

This sounds a bit like projection, now that there's been a late-hour directional switch.  Reuters has a chart of that here.

Now, it's possible there was no cheating at all.  Not likely, but possible, given that the city-dwellers voted for the leftist candidate and the outland Peruvians cast their votes for Keiko.  The directional switch comes from rural voters, according to Reuters, which could include Amazon Indian tribes.  Their votes may echo those of many Indian tribes in Arizona and the Rockies, inexplicably voting blue despite the damage that leftists do to them.  However, the appearance of the Shining Path Marxist narco-terrorists with a signature massacre in the closing days of the campaign could point against it, though.  Nobody suffered more from these vile Marxist narco-terrorist killers than the indigenous peoples of the Andes and the Amazon rainforest in Peru.  So much for championing "the people."  These communist monsters made Indians special targets of their sadistic murders.  Keiko is the daughter of Peru's President Alberto Fujimori, who beat the hell out of these terrorists a couple of decades back and made Peru a safe place for peace-loving Peruvians, and she vows to do the same.

Did the rural voters really vote for these Marxists?  Did the Marxists really convince them they'd be tough on terrorists, too, and give them a lot of free stuff? 

We don't know for sure at this point, but here in the states, we know what we also experienced.  We also know that Keiko is a pretty close approximation to President Trump in her conservative populism, meaning that her ascent has made leftists crazed with rage.  And we know that Peru was hit very hard by COVID, same as the states, which might have brought in a desire for a change of power without regard to the danger.

It's tempting to look at past leftists elected to Peru's presidency and conclude and hope that these leftists won't be so bad.  Past presidents, such as Ollanta Humala, who ran as a leftist, weren't too bad.  Nor was Alan Garcia, who kept to his word and made Peru a free marketplace of prosperity after a disastrous first term.  Plus, Peru has always been polarized, and Peruvians have always hated their president, even when their president (to us outsiders) seemed quite good.  Peruvian thing.

But the fact that Mario Vargas Llosa, Peru's Nobel literature laureate, and his son, distinguished libertarian essayist Alvaro Vargas Llosa, have reconciled with Keiko (like the conservative/libertarian intellectuals who became NeverTrumps, they had been NeverKeikos in the past), and asked that voters elect Keiko over the communist signals that they know that these communists are bad. 

If so, it's extremely worrisome, assuming that this leftist, Castillo, manages to fraud his way into office.  I can't speak for the Vargas Llosas, but my understanding is that they had disliked the Fujimoris because they played rough and dirty politics, which was likely true.  But if the leftist takes power over Keiko; it stands as a reminder that communists play even fouler and dirtier in their ends-justifies-the-means morality.  And it's quite likely that Keiko in this round refused to play dirty if the Vargas Llosas could come around to champion them.

This is sad.  And a scary reminder that such fraud is becoming less and less an anomaly.  It will be interesting what the Bidens say about this if the fraud becomes pretty obvious.

Image: Twitter screen shot.

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