23° GUATEMALA
28/09/2022
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Five Keys to Understanding Guatemala in 2022

These are five keys to understanding Guatemala in 2022. There could have been more, but let's start with these.

Ronald Flores |
05 de enero, 2022

These are five keys to understanding Guatemala in 2022. There could have been more, but let's start with these.

1. Attorney General Selection Process 

The Complex, Multilevel Attorney General Selection Process will take place in early 2022. Candidates self nominate. A peer-review committee is in charge of assessing and ranking candidates that meet the legal requirements. The committee selects six finalists. The President will appoint one of those six finalists as Attorney General for a four year term, starting in mid May. No AG has been reelected in recent history. It is likely the six finalists will be a mix of repeat candidates and newcomers.   

2. Pre Candidates Seeking Public Posturing

The 2023 General Elections have not officially begun, but all contenders will be desperate to impress the voting public. New electoral regulations forbid direct and open electoral advertisements and campaign events. However, most contenders are active in traditional media, social media and are holding small events. At least a dozen presidential hopefuls will defy the tight electoral regulations to boost their public image. Some fear these regulations will be applied capriciously or only against those out of the loop. 

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US Blacklist

The Biden administration is blacklisting high profile political figures, as a way to at least damage their reputation and hamper their electoral viability. Like in a sniper or drone operation, blacklisting key figures is a desperate measure to regain leverage in the national scene. Without old-fashioned diplomacy, a wider range of political contacts and popular support, these measures might only have a very limited impact. The long term effects of these designations are imprecise. It should only be used as a last resource.

Guatemalan Government 

The Executive polls lows, but has a tight grip on power. It  is halfway through its incredible balancing act. It did not manage the pandemic as well as others, but it was lucky as the pandemic was not catastrophic as predicted. People perceive the government as unreliable, erratic, and sometimes also corrupt. However, it is still very much in control of the situation, with plenty of resources and a lot of room to maneuver and improve. 

The Region is Unstable

Guatemala is a strong regional partner of the US, particularly in deterring the migration flow and as a Safe Third Country of sorts. Guatemala is clearly not close to the US administration, but it is closer than Nicaragua, El Salvador and Honduras, to say the least. Most of us hope for the region to improve its living conditions for all, to be prosperous and free.

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