Costa Rican general election, 1962

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Costa Rican general election, 1962
Costa Rica
← 1958 February 4, 1962 1966 →
Turnout 80%
  Francisco J. Orlich.jpg Calderón Guardia 1940 cropped.jpg Otilio Ulate Blanco.jpg
Nominee Francisco Orlich Rafael Calderón Otilio Ulate
Party National Liberation National Republican National Union
Home state Alajuela San José San José
Popular vote 192,850 135,533 51,740
Percentage 50% 35.3% 13.5%

Resultados electorales provinciales 1962.png
In green provinces won by Orlich, blue by Calderón

President before election

Mario Echandi
National Union

Elected President

Francisco Orlich
National Liberation

Coat of arms of Costa Rica.svg
This article is part of a series on the
politics and government of
Costa Rica

General elections were held in Costa Rica on February 4, 1962.[1] Francisco Orlich Bolmarcich of the National Liberation Party won the presidential election, whilst his party also won the parliamentary election. Voter turnout was 80.9%.[2]


During Mario Echandi’s presidency Rafael Angel Calderón, his family and supporters in exile, were allowed to return and a general amnesty was called for everyone involved in the still recent Civil War of 1948.[3] Calderón was elected Congressman in the 1958 election. But meanwhile in the past election the National Liberation Party was split due to the separation of the “Rossist” faction in this election Calderon’s candidacy unified PLN and other political allies into a strong anti-Calderonist ballot.[3]

Both former presidents Otilio Ulate from National Union and Calderón himself from National Republican became candidates. PLN’s candidate was, as in 1958, Francisco Orlich, one of the party’s founder, commander of one of the fronts during the civil war and Figueres’ close friend.[3]

A fourth small left-wing party named Popular Democratic Action led by socialist thinker Enrique Obregón also took part in the election nominating Obregon.[3] Communism was illegal according to the Constitution and Marxist Parties were not allowed, but Obregon’s party was officially socialist so the prohibition was not endorsed. Even so, Obregón did had the support of the traditional leadership and militancy of the (outlawed) Communist Party.[3]


All parties promised land reform. Calderon’s publicity was particular in saying “Yesterday social reform, today land reform” taking advantage of the socialist reforms during his presidency.[3] As the Cuban Revolution was recent the anti-Communist speech was common. All main parties accused each other of having links with Communism; PLN because of its socialist ideology (social democracy) and Figueres alleged friendship with Fidel Castro and Calderón because of his previous alliance with the Communists in the 1940s.[3] The far-right anti-Communist group Free Costa Rica Movement paid for a strong anti-Communist propaganda, especially against Popular Democratic Action.[3]



Candidate Party Votes %
Francisco Orlich Bolmarcich National Liberation Party 192,850 50.3
Rafael Ángel Calderón Guardia National Republican Party 135,533 35.3
Otilio Ulate Blanco National Union Party 51,740 13.5
Enrique Obregón Valverde Popular Democratic Action 3,339 0.9
Invalid/blank votes 7,944 -
Total 391,406 100
Source: Nohlen


Party Votes % Seats +/-
National Liberation Party 184,135 48.9 29 +9
National Republican Party 126,249 33.5 18 +8
National Union Party 50,021 13.3 8 -2
Popular Democratic Action 9,256 2.5 2 New
Partido Acción Solidarista 3,358 0.9 0 New
Partido Alajuelense 1,698 0.5 0 New
Movemento Depuración Nacional 1,192 0.3 0 New
Unión Guanacasta Independiente 903 0.2 0 New
Partido Renovación Nacional 125 0.0 0 New
Invalid/blank votes 14,563 - - -
Total 391,500 100 57 +12
Source: Nohlen


  1. ^ Nohlen, D (2005) Elections in the Americas: A data handbook, Volume I, p155 ISBN 978-0-19-928357-6
  2. ^ Nohlen, p156
  3. ^ a b c d e f g h Hernández Naranjo, Gerardo. "Reseña de las elecciones presidenciales de 1962" (PDF) (in Spanish). Retrieved 13 April 2016.