Nayib Bukele, the technology-savvy millennial president of El Salvador who catapulted the small Central American nation to the forefront of Bitcoin adoption, has declared victory in the country’s 2024 presidential election based on exit polls.
Nayib Bukele has declared victory in El Salvador’s 2024 presidential election based on exit polls showing he won over 85% of votes
If confirmed, he will serve another 5 year term until 2029 and likely continue his Bitcoin-friendly policies
In his first term, Bukele made Bitcoin legal tender in 2021 and El Salvador now holds 2,825 BTC worth about $120 million
His Bitcoin plan was criticized by institutions like the IMF but polls show he remains very popular in El Salvador
His party is also projected to win at least 58 out of 60 seats in the legislative assembly, giving him broad power
The polls, conducted by local firm CID Gallup, show Bukele winning a commanding 87% share of votes – more than enough to secure another 5-year term until 2029 without facing a runoff vote. His Nuevas Ideas party also looks set to control El Salvador’s legislative assembly, having apparently secured at least 58 of 60 seats.
If the official results confirm the exit polls, Bukele would become the first Salvadoran president since the 1930s to win consecutive terms. It would also solidify his grip on power and enable him to continue pursuing controversial policies like Bitcoin without domestic opposition.
Bukele first shot to global prominence in 2021 when he spearheaded a law to make El Salvador the first country worldwide to give Bitcoin status as legal tender. The move was panned by international financial institutions like the IMF but proved wildly popular at home where Bukele’s approval ratings remain astronomical three years later.
BREAKING: El Salvador President Bukele set to win re-election in MASSIVE LANDSLIDE after mass incarceration of gang members https://t.co/Tt8Ejd3Xis
— Human Events (@HumanEvents) February 5, 2024
His government has taken other steps to spur Bitcoin adoption, including rolling out the Chivo digital wallet, buying up coins to add to El Salvador’s national reserves, and offering residence permits to foreign investors willing to purchase $100,000 worth of crypto assets.
As of February 2024, El Salvador holds at least 2,825 Bitcoins worth around $120 million. Bukele’s ambitious Bitcoin experiment looked risky during 2022’s crypto winter but the recent market rebound has pushed his country’s stash into the black once again.
Beyond championing Bitcoin, Bukele has also led a no-holds-barred military crackdown to rein in powerful street gangs like MS-13. His “mano dura” policies have proven effective at curbing violence and extortion, further fueling his popularity.
If exit polls translate into official results as expected, Bukele would consolidate his growing authoritarian tendencies with virtually no domestic checks on his power. While libertarian-leaning crypto advocates may laud his disruptive embrace of Bitcoin, more conventional international observers have raised concerns about democratic backsliding and respect for civil liberties.
In his second term, expect El Salvador’s millennial president to move full steam ahead towards a future fueled by Volcano Bonds, laser eyes, and number go up technology. For better or worse, Bukele’s landslide victory cements his tiny country’s status as Bitcoin’s unlikely laboratory.
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