Whether Chavez’s win could lead to a reset of poor relations with the United States won’t be clear until after next month’s U.S. presidential election, one diplomatic source said.
Relations between the two countries have been especially tense since 2010, when Venezuela refused to accept U.S. Ambassador Larry Palmer and the U.S. in turn revoked the visa of Bernardo Alvarez Herrera, Venezuela’s then-ambassador to Washington. There has been no subsequent exchange of ambassadors.
In any case, Chavez partisans exulted Monday. With 97% of ballots counted, Chavez had 8.04 million votes, or 55.1%, to Capriles’ 6.46 million votes, or 44.3%.