WASHINGTON–U.S. Senator Chirs Murphy (D-Conn.), a member of the U.S. Senate Foreign Relations Committee, joined U.S. Senate Majority Whip Dick Durbin (D-Ill.) and U.S. Senators Bill Cassidy (R-La.), Bob Menendez (D-N.J.), Joni Ernst (R-Iowa), Tim Kaine (D-Va.), and Marco Rubio (R-Fla.) in a bipartisan letter to Secretary of State Antony Blinken expressing concerns about ongoing efforts to undermine the pre-electoral and primary processes leading up to critical presidential elections scheduled in that country in 2024.
“The Venezuelan people cannot afford to see another fraudulent election, which will only bring further suffering to their nation and foment greater instability in the Americas,” the Senators wrote. “Unfortunately, with a presidential election scheduled for 2024, the Maduro regime is already doing everything possible to undermine prospects for a credible vote.”
On June 14, the Maduro regime demanded the resignation of the members of the National Electoral Council (CNE). A new council was just appointed through a process brazenly headed by Maduro’s spouse, Cilia Flores. Moreover, over multiple years, the Maduro regime has pre-emptively banned multiple opposition candidates from running for office, including the likely current frontrunner Maria Corina Machado. Most recently, the Maduro regime announced that international election observers from European will not be permitted in the country for next year’s general elections.
The Senators’ letter continues, “Despite these setbacks, Venezuela’s opposition parties are taking steps to hold primary elections in October to democratically choose a candidate who will challenge Nicolás Maduro in next year’s elections.”
Given these dynamics and persistent efforts by Maduro to destroy any semblance of a legitimate primary or general election process, the Senators’ letter stresses the following:
Along with Durbin, Cassidy, Menendez, Ernst, Kaine, and Rubio, today’s letter was cosigned by U.S. Senators Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.), Rick Scott (R-Fla.), Michael Bennet (D-Colo.), John Cornyn (R-Texas), Ben Cardin (D-Md.), Jeff Merkley (D-Ore.), Alex Padilla (D-Calif.), Catherine Cortez-Masto (D-Nev.), Thom Tillis (R-N.C.), Chris Coons (D-Del.), Cory Booker (D-N.J.), Peter Welch (D-Vt.), and Marsha Blackburn (R-Tenn.).