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Uruguay's presidential run-off election: Jose Mujica versus Luis Lacalle

November 29, 2009 | 10:49 am

Voters in Uruguay's presidential runoff election today will choose between Sen. José Mujica, a former leftist guerrilla, and former President Luis A. Lacalle.

Polls show Mujica, known as El Pepe, ahead in the race to succeed President Tabaré Vázquez, Uruguay’s socialist leader. Mujica previously served as minister of livestock, agriculture and fisheries under Vázquez.

The 74-year-old Mujica campaigned as a consensus builder and vowed to rely on negotiation to improve conditions in the country while continuing successful economic policies initiated by Vázquez. Lacalle, 68, vowed to eliminate a progressive income tax started under Vázquez while reducing state bureaucracies.

In Honduras, a presidential election today features neither ousted President Manuel Zelaya, who is urging a boycott, nor de-facto leader Roberto Micheletti, who came to power through a coup in late June. The top contenders for Honduras' top spot are businessmen Porfirio Lobo and Elvin Santos.

-- Efrain Hernandez Jr.