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Americas | International | Government & Elections

Ahead of Pivotal El Salvador Vote, Rep. Raul Grijalva Leads Congressional Call to Reverse Longstanding U.S. Interference
by via Democracy Now
Wednesday Mar 11th, 2009 7:34 AM
Wednesday, March 11, 2009 :Voters in El Salvador head to the polls Saturday for a historic presidential election. The leftist FMLN party is projected to win, ending two decades of rule by the ARENA party. Thirty Congressmembers have sent President Obama a letter calling for US neutrality in Saturday’s election. Five years ago, the Bush administration was accused of threatening to cut off aid to El Salvador if voters supported the FMLN. We speak to Democratic Rep. Raul Grijalva of Arizona, co-author of the letter to President Obama.
Voters in El Salvador are heading to the polls on Saturday for a historic presidential election. Polls project the leftist FMLN party will take power for the first time ending two decades of conservative rule by the ARENA party.

The FMLN is a former guerilla group that fought El Salvador’s U.S. backed military government in a civil war from 1980 to 1992. Last week 30 members of the US House of Representatives sent President Obama a letter calling for US neutrality in Saturday’s election.

Historically, the right-wing ARENA party has had close ties to Washington. Five years ago, the Bush administration was accused of threatening to cut off aid to El Salvador if voters supported the FMLN.

We are joined now from Capitol Hill by Democratic Congressman Raul Grijalva of Arizona. He co-authored the letter to President Obama. He is the co-chair of the Progressive Caucus.

Rep. Raul Grijalva, co-chair of the Progressive Caucus. He sponsored a letter signed by more than 30 lawmakers urging President Obama to support transparent and free elections in El Salvador.

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