Down in Lima is where the action is

For several weeks, President Pedro Castillo of Peru has been at war with the Legislature, and they finally had enough of the leftist's ways.  So they took action today:

Peru's Congress voted to oust President Pedro Castillo in an impeachment trial on Wednesday, hours after he plunged the country into a constitutional crisis by attempting to dissolve the legislature by decree.

Ignoring Castillo's attempt to shut down Congress, lawmakers moved ahead with the previously planned impeachment trial, with 101 votes in favor of removing him, six against and 10 abstentions. The result was announced with loud cheers and the legislature called Vice President Dina Boluarte to take office.

Peru's national police shared an image on Twitter of Castillo sitting unrestrained at a police station after the vote to remove him and said that it had "intervened" to fulfill its duties. It referred to Castillo as "ex-president". It was unclear if he had been detained.

So Pedro is out, and Dina is in, and most Peruvians are probably sick and tired of the whole show.

Castillo is not new to controversy.  They've tried to oust him twice since 2021.

According to Andrea Moncada, a Peruvian journalist and political analyst currently based in the U.K., the situation is more complicated than just replacing the president:

The Castillo government, thus far, has not proved to be the threat to the private sector that it was feared to be. In fact, it has largely maintained the same fiscal and macroeconomic management that's been in place since the structural adjustment policies implemented in the 1990s.

And yet, macroeconomic discipline alone cannot foster the conditions necessary for Peru's development. Politics was eventually bound to catch up to the economy. Unfortunately, it has coincided with a highly incompetent president at the helm, adding fuel to the fire.

Yes, Castillo did turn out to be highly incompetent.  I agree with that.  My local friend from Peru added that he turned out to be a little more ideological than pragmatic.  In the end, Castillo wanted to be a continental leader, like a Chávez, but Peruvians just wanted a president who could manage their economy and work with the opposition.

So Castillo is under arrest, and Peru is facing another political crisis.  They've had a few of those before.

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Image: Machu Picchu, Peru.  Credit: Pedro Szekely via Flickr, CC BY-NC-SA 2.0.

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