The New ideas political party has positioned itself as the predominant winner in the upcoming February 28th elections. The most recent polls show that the party founded by president Nayib Bukele will gain control of the Salvadoran Legislative branch and become the number one political force in the country.
The upcoming legislative and municipal elections will be one of the most important since the armed conflict ended in 1992. If the New Ideas political takes control of the legislative branch, it will signal a change in Salvadoran politics. Since 1992, political parties ARENA and the FMLN have maintained control of the legislative branch.
The February elections will be the first in which the New Ideas political party will be competing. New Ideas was officially certified as a political party by the Salvadoran electoral tribunal in August 2018.
Even though the polls show that Salvadorans will be voting for New Ideas, their candidates are unknown to most Salvadorans. For that reason, the political party is using the popularity of President Nayib Bukele as their principal campaign focus. Since his inauguration, Bukele has maintained an approval rate of over 75%.
The majority of campaign ads from New Ideas do not use or display specific candidates; instead, they use the catchphrase “Vote for New Ideas, mark the N for new ideas, the N of Nayib Bukele, our president.” New Ideas candidates are using the popularity of Bukele to get elected.
The popularity of Bukele and New Ideas is unprecedented. Even with accusations of corruption against members of his cabinet and reports that his administration has been negotiating with gangs to reduce murders and support in the upcoming elections, Bukele and his political party still popular.
The opposing political parties have been unsuccessful in gaining ground against the president’s political party. Many Salvadorans view both ARENA and FMLN, who have governed the country for the last 30 years, as corrupt and inept. It is gotten so bad for the traditional political parties that some of their candidates do not use their party colors in ads or public gatherings.
One thing is for sure, according to recent polls, New Ideas, the party of President Nayib Bukele, will be the primary winner in the upcoming elections. If that happens, President Bukele and his political party will have control of both the Legislative and executive branches of government.