• Maduro says he would govern with `civil-military union'
  • Opposition win in December vote would be `turbulent'

Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro warned that he wouldn’t let a defeat in December congressional elections derail his government even as his socialist party faces the possibility of losing control of the national assembly for the first time in 16 years.

While the embattled leader said he would accept the results of the election, whatever the outcome, he’s not willing to “surrender the revolution.”

“I would govern with the people, always with the people and the civil-military union,” Maduro said late Thursday on state television, in response to a question on how he would govern in the event the opposition takes control of congress. “In such a scenario, Venezuela would enter one of the most turbulent and poignant stages of its political life.”

Triple-digit inflation, the worst economic contraction in the world this year and record shortages of food and medicine are undercutting support for both Maduro and his party. Candidates for Venezuela’s opposition alliance and independents are expected to get 66.3 percent of votes in the December election, according to September poll by Caracas-based Venezuelan Institute of Data Analysis, known as IVAD.

Given Maduro’s latest comments, “People are naive if they think there is a legislative way out of the current situation,” said Carl Meacham, Director of the Americas program at Center for Strategic and International Studies in Washington. “It’s increasingly unlikely that Maduro would leave through an electoral process. This country stopped being a democracy years ago.”

Maduro in July signaled that he won’t allow international observers to monitor the election. Brazil’s electoral court TSE said earlier this month that it wouldn’t join a Unasur mission to observe the election citing delays in an accord with Venezuela’s electoral body.

“The revolution will not be surrendered ever,” Maduro said. “With the constitution in hand, we will push Venezuela’s independence forward, whatever the costs, in any way.”

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