Aleteia logoAleteia logo
Aleteia
Wednesday 25 November |
Saint Catherine of Alexandria
home iconNews
line break icon

Venezuela's new pro-government super-assembly claims power to make laws

NICOLAS MADURO,VENEZUELA

Government of Venezuela | CC

John Burger - published on 08/21/17

Opposed by Vatican and others, Maduro's Constitution-writing body surges ahead

The president of Venezuela, Nicolas Maduro, did not give his countrymen a choice about whether to rewrite their constitution. He simply gave them a choice of what Venezuelans to vote for to be members of the “Constituent Assembly,” the body that will do the work of that rewriting.

Some say that even there the choices were limited to representatives who supported Maduro’s vision for Venezuela.

Now that the 545-member Constituent Assembly has been seated—against the protests of Pope Francis—it has decreed that it has the power to pass laws.

National Public Radio explained that while the move does not officially dissolve the Venezuelan legislature, it “effectively renders the body of lawmakers moot by appropriating its principle responsibility.”

The Venezuelan congress, which has been filled with opposition politicians since their big wins in 2015 elections, has long been a thorn in the side of a president who has been tightening his hold on power.

As NPR’s Philip Reeves notes, the assembly’s maneuver Friday marks “another milestone in a rapid journey toward dictatorship.”

As the pro-Maduro legislative superbody accumulates powers, the Venezuelan president and his Socialist Party now enjoy wide-ranging influence over every branch of government — including the Supreme Court, whose abortive attempt to nullify the country’s opposition-controlled congress at the end of March helped set off months of violent unrest.

In May, as the economic crisis in Venezuela continued to leave the masses with little to eat and dangerous shortages of medicine, and violent protests continued against the regime, Maduro called for the constituent assembly with the idea that it would bring peace to the country.

The U.S. State Department joined South American trade bloc Mercosur in condemning the new super-assembly, Reuters reported. Mercosur founding members Brazil, Argentina, Uruguay and Paraguay will not recognize any measures taken by the assembly, the group said in a statement.

Tags:
Venezuela
Support Aleteia!

If you’re reading this article, it’s thanks to the generosity of people like you, who have made Aleteia possible.

Here are some numbers:

  • 20 million users around the world read Aleteia.org every month
  • Aleteia is published every day in eight languages: English, French, Arabic, Italian, Spanish, Portuguese, Polish, and Slovenian
  • Each month, readers view more than 50 million pages
  • Nearly 4 million people follow Aleteia on social media
  • Each month, we publish 2,450 articles and around 40 videos
  • We have 60 full time staff and approximately 400 collaborators (writers, translators, photographers, etc.)

As you can imagine, these numbers represent a lot of work. We need you.

Support Aleteia with as little as $1. It only takes a minute. Thank you!

Daily prayer
And today we celebrate...




Top 10
LUXOR FILM FESTIVAL
Zoe Romanowsky
20-year-old filmmaker wins award for powerful...
Luz Ivonne Ream
What’s the secret of this couple’s 64 years o...
Giuseppe Moscati
Larry Peterson
A volcano, a plague, a war: This doctor-saint...
PADRE PIO
Philip Kosloski
Padre Pio's favorite prayer of petition
CHRIST THE KING
Edifa
Why do we say that "Christ is King"?
CHRISTMAS AD
Cerith Gardiner
This heartwarming TV ad focuses on what reall...
FATHER RANIERO CANTALAMESSA
Kathleen N. Hattrup
Pope's preacher won't become a bishop though ...
See More
Newsletter
Get Aleteia delivered to your inbox. Subscribe here.