Social Party of National Unity

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Social Party of National Unity
Leader Juan Manuel Santos
Founded 2005 (2005)
Headquarters Bogotá, Colombia
Ideology Liberalism
Neoliberalism
Third way[1]
Political position Centre-right
International affiliation Liberal International (observer)
Colours Red, Orange, Green
Seats in the Chamber of Representatives
39 / 164
Seats in the Senate
21 / 102
Website
www.partidodelau.com
Politics of Colombia
Political parties
Elections

The Social Party of National Unity (Spanish: Partido Social de Unidad Nacional), or Party of the U (Spanish: Partido de «la U») is a conservative liberal political party in Colombia. It attempts to unite various parliamentary supporters of Álvaro Uribe, the Uribistas, in one political party. Currently, it is Colombia's largest political party and has formed a coalition with the Colombian Conservative Party and the Colombian Liberal Party.

Security is the top priority of most Uribistas, followed by employment and investment in Colombia. Uribistas also support lower taxes for private companies and for citizens. They stand in strong opposition to former president of Venezuela Hugo Chávez and to the Bolivarian movement that Chavez led in different countries of Latin America.

The party was founded in 2005 and is led by Juan Manuel Santos. Most members of the movement left the Colombian Liberal Party but they failed to unite all Uribistas: in particular the Radical Change (Cambio Radical) didn't join. The party took part in the parliamentary elections of 2006, in which it won 30 out of 166 deputies and 20 out of 100 senators.

The party, along with Cambio Radical, were the first to investigate the relation between some candidates and paramilitary forces. After investigating, many candidates were fired from the party and weren't supported by it. Most of these candidates joined minor parties, and were elected as congressmen.

In 2009, more than half of the congressmen from the Radical Change Party switched to Party of the U, so the party became Colombia's largest.

For 2010 presidential elections, Party of the U chose former defense minister Juan Manuel Santos as presidential candidate and syndicalist Angelino Garzon as vicepresidential candidate. They have obtained support from an important sector of the Colombian Conservative Party.

On March 14, 2010, congressional elections were held. Party of the U obtained 27 seats in senate, seven more than in 2006.

On June 20, 2010, the Party of the U candidate Juan Manuel Santos was elected President of Colombia.

Ideological platform[edit]

The Programatic Declaration (Declaración Programática) is the official ideological platform of the party.

  • The Social Party of National Unity supports the development of a welfare state and recognizes the family as base of society. It also recognizes and approves globalization, emphasizing education, science and technology as opportunities that can help Colombia succeed in a global market. The party supports decentralization and autonomy of regions. Currently, the Caribbean Region is the first to begin the process to obtain more autonomy.
  • For Uribistas, security is the first duty of the State. Without security, social programs can't be successful in rural areas controlled by narcoterrorist groups. The concept of Democratic Security, the main axis of Uribe's government, consists of bringing security to different social sectors, including ethnic minorities, journalists, labor unions and regional politicians.
  • The concept of "Communitarian State" is another important ideological pillar for the party. It emphasizes the development of communities, in order to bring stability to the whole state. The state brings development to marginalized communities while private companies focus on the economy, providing additional products and services.
  • The Party has a strong think-tank called Security and Democracy Foundation (Fundación Seguridad y Democracia) directed by Alfredo Rangel, which analyzes security in the different countries of Latin America.
  • The party leader has also claimed that he supports Tony Blair's Third Way approach.[2]

Since 2012, the party has been an observer member of the Liberal International.[3]

Founding members[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Crowe, Darcy (21 June 2010). "Colombia Elects Santos as President". The Wall Street Journal. Retrieved 13 September 2012. 
  2. ^ Crowe, Darcy (21 June 2010). "Colombia Elects Santos as President". The Wall Street Journal. Retrieved 13 September 2012. 
  3. ^ Partido de la U - Colombia, Liberal International: Observer members. Retrieved on 2 March 2013.

External links[edit]