Chile faces tough choice in presidential run-off
December 19, 2021 - Voters in Chile head to the polls in a presidential run-off in which two candidates offer completely opposing visions for the country’s future, after two years of street protests and political unrest.
Voters will have to choose between the progressive former student leader Gabriel Boric, 35, and the far-right candidate, José Antonio Kast, 55.
Boric, who shot to prominence during Chile’s 2011 education protests, has promised to “bury” Chile’s “neoliberal” past of market-oriented policies imposed under the dictator Gen Augusto Pinochet, and pledges to build a fairer country
marked by inclusivity, diversity and liberal social values.
Kast is an ultra-conservative who defends free markets and traditional values. A father of nine, he is staunch Catholic who speaks out against immigration, same-sex marriage and abortion. He has earned support among those who believe Chile needs a firm hand after the recent turbulent period.