With legislative elections in Madeira coming two weeks ahead of voting on Portuguese mainland, there seems to be little doubt that the votes of 8000 recently-returned ‘Luso-Venezuelans’ will be decisive for the island archipelago.
An article in Expresso suggests there is the same kind of chance of PS Socialists gaining ground in Madeira as there is of PSD and/ or CDS doing so in ‘continental Portugal’.
Madeira’s ‘difference’ is that it has always had a strong PSD leaning with links to emigrés in Venezuela.
And Venezuelans fleeing the chaos of Bolivarian Socialism want nothing to do with Socialism of any kind ever again.
“The Venezuelans do not like Socialists and are motivated”, says Expresso. “Those that can vote, will vote”, and they won’t be making up excuses
Explained lawyer-by-profession-turned-baker-by-necessity Carlos Fernandes: “ The people of Venezuela are used to waiting hours in queues! All we need to know is how to vote and where we can vote…”
Fernandes arrived in Madeira at the height of the exodus from Venezuela and has already managed to get himself selected to represent the PSD in the upcoming elections.
Explains Expresso for anyone who hasn’t experienced the changes to Madeira since the arrival of so many thousand returning emigrés and their families, Venezuelans now are ‘everywhere’: serving in shops, restaurants and cafés and so traumatised by their recent experiences that they “reject everything that the word Socialism implies”.
Meantime, the ‘election race’ on the mainland is at the polar opposite scale. PS Socialists are polled to be ‘on track’ for an absolute majority (in which they may not need the support of left-wing allies) – with the centre right parties of the PSD and CDS failing to make any relevant headlines.