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Venezuela's Crisis Deepens by the Day. But Maduro Is Celebrating the Start of Six More Years in Office

January 09, 2019

President Nicolás Maduro is set to be sworn in for a second term Thursday at a moment when there is little for him to celebrate. 

His country is collapsing. There are signs of dissent in his inner circle. Socialist Venezuela is increasingly isolated, and its neighborhood has never been more unfriendly.

And yet, after an election in May tainted by allegations of fraud, Maduro begins his next six-year stint seemingly in a position of relative strength at home. According to Félix Seijas, head of the Caracas-based polling firm Delphos, the president remains extraordinarily unpopular, but so does his opposition — perhaps even more so. 

Massive pro-democracy protests filled Venezuela’s streets for months in 2017. But after a brutal government response left more than 100 people dead, public demonstrations are now largely confined to smaller, more pragmatic rallies protesting water shortages and power blackouts...

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