Radical Change

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Radical Change
Cambio Radical
President German Vargas Lleras
Founded 1998 (1998)
Headquarters Bogotá, Colombia
Colors          Red, blue
Seats in the Chamber of Representatives
16 / 164
Seats in the Senate
9 / 102
Governors
1 / 32
Website
www.partidocambioradical.org
Politics of Colombia
Political parties
Elections

Radical Change (Spanish: Cambio Radical) is a political party in Colombia.

At the last legislative elections in Colombia on March 12, 2006, the party became one of the most important in the new congress, receiving 15 seats in the lower house and 20 in the upper house. Along with the Social Party of National Unity, or "Party of the U" (the biggest party in the lower house and the second biggest in the upper house) and the Conservative Party, it was president Álvaro Uribe's main ally in congress and formed part of his absolute majority.

History[edit]

Origins[edit]

After the tenure of president Ernesto Samper (1994-1998), a fraction of the Liberal Party was not happy with the new Social democratic rout the party was taking. As such, members with more right-wing ideas left and formed the party. It, however, did not run for either parliamentary or presidential elections.

Uribe Government[edit]

In the 2002 elections, the party won 2 seats on the Senate and 7 in the chamber of representatives. They ended up joining a coalition with the government of Uribe. The party voted in favor of the re-electionist project, which meant changing the parts of the constitution that prevented the president to run for a second term.

2006 was their best electoral year. They became the 4th largest political group in congress with 15 senators and 18 representatives, they remained in coalition with the Uribe administration and supported his candidacy for re-election. German Vargas Lleras, then leader of the party and senator, became one of the most active voices in the senate.

Breakup[edit]

Things, however, would turn sour for the coalition when the biggest party in congress (And Uribe's new Social Party of National Unity|U Party) proposed to change the constitution, yet again, to allow the president to run for a third term. The party was divided between those who wanted a second direct re-election and those who were against it (Vargas Lleras being among the ones against it).

Although the project was deemed un-constitutional by the supreme court, the damage was already done and those who were still with Uribe quit the party to run for congress in the 2010 parliamentary elections with the U party.

In 2010 the party suffered big blows, losing votes and members in both chambers of congress (they lost 7 senators and 2 representatives). Vargas Lleras then ran as the party candidate in the 2010 presidential election finishing in third place on the first round. The party then joined the first round winner, Juan Manuel Santos, along with the Liberal Party and the Conservative party to form the "National Unity Pact" that would work together for the next 4 years.

National Unity Pact[edit]

The party remained true to their word and helped the government with most of their agenda.

When the peace talks with the FARC guerrilla began, the party offered their approval and criticized now ex-President Uribe for opposing the dialogues.

In 2014 the party participated in the parliamentary elections and went in coalition with Santos to be re-elected. Vargas Lleras was named the vice-presidential candidate. Although the party got less votes than in 2010, they regained one senator but lost one seat in the chamber. Santos won the second round of the presidential elections that year making vice-president the highest position the party has ever achieved.

External links[edit]