EspañolMuch was said during the last election in Panama about how Ricardo Martinelli’s government was destroying the country’s institutions. Buying off congressmen, the near elimination of the separation of powers, rampant corruption, among other things, became the talk of the town.
Voters could not wait to remove Martinelli from power and elect a leader who would restore the country’s damaged institutions and create an environment of peace and democracy. The public did not want to see Martinelli reelected through his puppet candidate José Domingo Arías, whose running mate for the vice presidential seat was the first lady at the time, Marta Linares de Martinelli.
Juan Carlos Varela, vice president during the Martinelli administration, sold himself as a staunch opponent of Martinelli. The constant attacks by José Domingo Arias and various candidates of the ruling Democratic Change (DC) party helped Valera completely separate himself from Martinelli and be seen as the true opposition candidate.