Costa Rican general election, 2002
Map on the left shows the seats won by each party by province. The map on the right shows which party won the plurality in each province in both rounds of the Presidential election.
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General elections were held in Costa Rica on 3 February 2002. For the first time in the country's history, no candidate in the presidential election passed the 40% threshold. This meant a second round of voting had to be held on 7 April which saw Abel Pacheco of the Social Christian Unity Party defeat the National Liberation Party's Rolando Araya Monge.
Many analysts consider this election the beginning of the end of Costa Rica’s decades-long two party system. For the first time in many years alternative political forces become really relevant in the Parliament and the plenary had three large party groups; PUSC (19), PLN (17) and PAC (14).
While PUSC won the presidential election and the majority in Congress, PLN became the primal opposition force in Parliament. Centre-left PAC with a progressive proposal seem to had gravely affected traditional third forces at the left of the spectrum like Democratic Force that fail to win any seat on that election even when for some years was Costa Rica’s main third party. Right-wing Libertarian Movement also increases its representation from one to six deputies while conservative Costa Rican Renewal Party won one seat as usual.
Despite the close contest, voter turnout was only 68.8% on 3 February the lowest since the 1958 elections. For the second round of the presidential elections it fell to 60.2%, the lowest since 1949.
Before the election, the country's Supreme Electoral Tribinal attempted to make several reforms to the electoral system. These included allowing independents to run in local elections, using electronic voting machines, allowing Costa Ricans living abroad to vote, and allowing voters to choose the top two places on parliamentary lists. However, the changes were rejected by the Legislative Assembly, which noted that independent candidature was incompatible with the constitution, and that electronic voting could not be guaranteed to be secure or transparent.
|Candidate||Party||First round||Second round|
|Abel Pacheco||Social Christian Unity Party||590,277||38.6||776,278||58.0|
|Rolando Araya Monge||National Liberation Party||475,030||31.1||563,202||42.0|
|Ottón Solís||Citizens' Action Party||400,681||26.2|
|Otto Guevara||Movimiento Libertario||25,815||1.7|
|Justo Orozco Álvarez||Costa Rican Renewal Party||16,404||1.1|
|Walter Muñoz Céspedes||National Integration Party||6,235||0.4|
|Vladimir De la Cruz De Lemos||Democratic Force||4,121||0.3|
|Walter Coto Molina||Coalition Change 2000||3,970||0.2|
|Rolando Angulo Zeledón||General Union||2,655||0.2|
|Daniel Reynolds Vargas||Patriótico Nacional||1,680||0.1|
|Marvin Calvo Montoya||Christian National Alliance||1,271||0.1|
|Pablo Angulo Casasola||National Rescue Party||905||0.0|
|Province %||PUSC %||PLN %||PAC %||ML %||PRC %||PIN %||FD %||Other %|
|Province||PUSC %||PLN %|
|Social Christian Unity Party||453,201||29.8||19||–8|
|National Liberation Party||412,383||27.1||17||–6|
|Citizens' Action Party||409,030||25.3||14||New|
|Costa Rican Renewal Party||54,699||3.6||1||0|
|National Integration Party||26,084||1.7||0||–1|
|Coalition Change 2000||12,992||0.8||0||New|
|Agrarian Labour Action Party||10,890||0.7||0||–1|
|Workers' Independent Party||8,044||0.5||0||New|
|National Patriotic Party||7,123||0.5||0||New|
|Cartago Agrarian Union Party||6,974||0.5||0||0|
|Christian National Alliance Party||6,825||0.4||0||New|
|General Union Party||5,883||0.4||0||0|
|National Rescue Party||4,937||0.3||0||0|
|National Agrarian Party||2,595||0.2||0||New|
|Cartago Agrarian Force Party||1,390||0.1||0||New|
|Source: Election Resources|
Source: Atlas Electoral
- Nohlen, D (2005) Elections in the Americas: A data handbook, Volume I, p155 ISBN 978-0-19-928357-6
- Nohlen, p. 150.
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- Greenspana, Eliot; Gill, Nicholas; O'Malley, Charlie; Gilsenan, Patrick; Perill, Jisel. [Elecciones legislativas de Costa Rica de 2002 Frommer's Central America] Check
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- Lopez, Jaime (July 18, 2013). "Civic Groups Move Against Gay Marriage in Costa Rica". Costa Rica Star. Retrieved 13 March 2016.
- Nohlen, pp. 156–157.