Chavez Wins New 6-Year Term

Your News Companion by Ben Mathis-Lilley
Oct. 8 2012 9:32 AM

Chavez Holds Off Challenger, Wins Re-Election in Venezuela

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Supporters of Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez celebrate after receiving news of his reelection in Caracas on Sunday night

Photo by Luis Acosta/AFP/GettyImages.

Hugo Chavez on Sunday won himself another six-year term as president of Venezuela, holding off a strong challenge from Henrique Capriles, a youthful lawyer affectionately dubbed "Skinny" by his supporters.

While the election proved to be the tightest of Chavez's roughly 14 years in power, ultimately the 58-year-old earned a comfortable margin of victory once the bulk of the votes were counted. The Washington Post with the details:

"The victory, announced by the National Electoral Council late Sunday, gave Chavez the win with 54.4 percent of the vote, while Capriles took 44.9 percent. In winning his fourth presidential election since 1998, Chavez captured just over 7.4 million votes to 6.1 million for his adversary, turning back what had been a determined battle by Capriles, a 40-year-old former governor."

As the New York Times reminds us, however, Chavez's health remains very much a question mark. He has undergone several rounds of treatment for cancer in the past 15 or so months, but has steadfastly refused to discuss details of his illness in public.

Josh Voorhees is a Slate senior writer. He lives in Iowa City.