Sen. DeMint On Honduras Trip: Our ambassador is the only person I met there who thinks there was a 'coup.'
For the first time in history the United States government is siding with Marxist leaders Hugo Chavez, Daniel Ortega, Raul Castro and Evo Morales against the pro-democratic Honduran government of Roberto Micheletti.
The Honduran Congress and Supreme Court along with the military ousted corrupt Leftist President Manuel Zelaya from power. Zelaya tried to illegally secure himself as president for life like his friend Hugo Chavez in Venezuela. Zelaya was, of course, supported by regional Marxists in Venezuela, Bolivia, and Cuba. The Honduran government appointed Roberto Micheletti president until the planned elections in November. At that time he will turn over control to the democratically elected successor. The Obama government has announced that they will not recognize the winner of the November election.
Manuel Zelaya, the ousted leftist leader of Honduras, is backed by Latin American Marxists Raul Castro, Evo Morales, Daniel Ortega and Hugo Chavez and American President Barack Obama.
Honduras’ President Manuel Zelaya poses with his Cuban counterpart Raul Castro (L) and Venezuelan counterpart Hugo Chavez (R) during the Central American integration meeting in Managua June 29, 2009. (REUTERS/Miraflores Palace)
In the last three months, much has been made of a supposed military “coup” that whisked former Honduran President Manuel Zelaya from power and the supposed chaos it has created.
After visiting Tegucigalpa last week and meeting with a cross section of leaders from Honduras’s government, business community, and civil society, I can report there is no chaos there. There is, however, chaos to spare in the Obama administration’s policy toward our poor and loyal allies in Honduras.
That policy was set in a snap decision the day Mr. Zelaya was removed from office, without a full assessment of either the facts or reliable legal analysis of the constitutional provisions at issue. Three months later, it remains in force, despite mounting evidence of its moral and legal incoherence.
While in Honduras, I spoke to dozens of Hondurans, from nonpartisan members of civil society to former Zelaya political allies, from Supreme Court judges to presidential candidates and even personal friends of Mr. Zelaya. Each relayed stories of a man changed and corrupted by power. The evidence of Mr. Zelaya’s abuses of presidential power—and his illegal attempts to rewrite the Honduran Constitution, a la Hugo Chávez—is not only overwhelming but uncontroverted.
As all strong democracies do after cleansing themselves of usurpers, Honduras has moved on.
The presidential election is on schedule for Nov. 29. Under Honduras’s one-term-limit, Mr. Zelaya could not have sought re-election anyway. Current President Roberto Micheletti—who was installed after Mr. Zelaya’s removal, per the Honduran Constitution—is not on the ballot either. The presidential candidates were nominated in primary elections almost a year ago, and all of them—including Mr. Zelaya’s former vice president—expect the elections to be free, fair and transparent, as has every Honduran election for a generation.
Indeed, the desire to move beyond the Zelaya era was almost universal in our meetings. Almost.
In a day packed with meetings, we met only one person in Honduras who opposed Mr. Zelaya’s ouster, who wishes his return, and who mystifyingly rejects the legitimacy of the November elections: U.S. Ambassador Hugo Llorens…
The Hondurans I met agree. All everyone seemed to want was a chance to make their case, or at least an independent review of the facts.