Fico Gutierrez - the possibility of becoming "Uribe’s Candidate"

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14 May 2022

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Federico Fico Gutierrez has been the most solid president-elect of the Colombian right since Sunday night. Although his name is on the electoral roll for the first time - he was Medellin's mayor and councilor it's his first time in the national election. There he won over 2 million votes with the Team for Colombia alliance. makes him an ideal candidate for conservative groups. Fico (47 years old) is currently the primary opponent to Gustavo Petro. His victory with the Historic Pact movement made him one of the most well-known politicians in Colombia.

The presidential campaign just begun. The question of whether Medellin's former mayor can become the real opposition to petrismo is dependent on the alliances are formed and the talks that he conducts. He must not just unite the whole right, but also take on a small portion of the center electorate which was shattered on Sunday. To achieve this, he'll need to continue to avoid appearing in the same photo as Alvaro Umribe, which has been his strategy to date. Today, public's support for uribsm has been expressed in a public manner. It's now possible to subtract instead of adding and this is the first time it has occurred in 20 years. "Federico Gutierrez faces a dilemma. He must make an alliance, on Uribe's side, with the Democratic Center. However, the challenge is convincing Uribe and the center, which is the one to determine its direction," Yann basset, analyst at the University of Rosario.

Fico has won its first victory this week on its path to a pledge of allegiance to the CD. Oscar Ivan Zuluaga the former presidential candidate decided to step aside, recognize the few alternatives available to compete with him and offer his support. We now need to see if the entire Uribismo collective who is without a representative, will do the same. Uribe could be a good example by being open and convincing his electorate with traditional issues that are typical of the Colombian Right. His remarks on "security", “order", "opportunities", and "love the land" has already showed that he has added voters. This was confirmed on Sunday during the election consultation similar to what he had done previously when he was at Antioquia's mayor's offices, where the mayor was also known as the sheriff of Medellin. He stated, "The bandits were either dead or in prison," while he was traveling to Arauca which is a region that is particularly vulnerable to violence. knows the Colombian legal system, but this will not be enough.

Basset declares, "We aren't in 2018 where the fear of the Left was working well." The analyst claims that Fico could not be granted Uribe's blessing due to the fact Alvaro Uribe has lost his absolute leadership role from 2002, when he was elected president. The votes of Uribismo are still crucial to Gutierrez. Uribism was also a key factor in the victory (winning in the coalition). Basset is now warning that his ability in negotiations will be measured. Concerning the relationship between former President Uribe and Fico, the expert Andres Mejia Vergnaud remarks "the great difficulty of Federico Gutierrez is that he is seeking the votes of Uribismo but not the photo with Uribe as it doesn't make sense for him to be his candidate".

While on the left there is only one candidate, Gustavo Petro, on the right is a man who is heading towards the presidential elections, unless Fico - - again, if he manages to negotiate - convinces him to step aside and support him. Rodolfo Hernández, an independent, is in contest. The former mayor of Bucaramanga who is a builder and millionaire, who succeeded in positioning himself well in the polls due to his anti-corruption speech in a light-hearted language, is a man that Gutierrez should include on his list of achievements in order to win the fight to petrismo.

Gutierrez has a lot to work on before he's able to even think about potential presidential formula names, however, he's got the backing of other candidates from the Team for Colombia coalition. This isn't a small sum. He is joined by two ex-mayors, Enrique Penalosa of Bogota and Alex Char of Barranquilla; the leader of the Conservative party David Barguil and Aydee Zarazo who is who is a Christian leader of the party, who vote judiciously in accordance with the guidelines of the lectern in his church.

Alongside the strengthened Conservative Party - it achieved the largest vote of the right-wing forces for Congress with over two million votes -, it is also backed by the U Party, which also had an outstanding vote in the legislative with less than one million votes. Oscar Ivan Zuluaga was there to support Fico. He did not go home from Sunday's election without taking time to play down his defeat and keep out of a battle for votes with those on the left. This gives Fico some momentum in a particular sector of conservatism. However, this also shields him from potential votes from the centre. The announcement of Alvaro Uribe, the former president, who called his party to meet Tuesday, will establish the extent to which Fico is willing to sacrifice his chances to be a center-right candidate to openly proclaim himself to be the Uribe that is blessed.
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