On Sunday, September 4, the Chilean people strongly rejected a proposal of a new Constitution: 62% of voters prevented its adoption. It was a complex, radical, ideological text: it aimed, among other things, to treat abortion and euthanasia as “rights”, impose gender ideology, recognize the “diversity of forms” of families, give the State precedence in the education of children over the right of parents.
The result is a hard blow for President Gabriel Boric, for his government’s agenda, for the Chilean left in general and, in particular, for the “Octubrist left.” The message was clear: the people do not share their sectarian utopia.
“The text proposed a kind of ‘refoundation’ of our homeland, it did not solve the problems of the people, and what people really seek is to live better,” that was one of the keys that led the “approval” to lose, says Chiara Barchesi, the youngest deputy in the history of Chile, deputy coordinator of the Republican Party in Parliament and member of the Political Network for Values. In dialogue with her this is what she told us:
The rejection of the proposed Constitution won the plebiscite with 62%. Surprised?
Yes, pleasantly surprised. The rejection led the polls consistently, but the turnout of the Chilean people was impressively clear. It exceeded our expectations.
What does that result mean?
That in Chile there is no room for ideological projects that divide Chileans. For months we saw certain political parties, organized groups and activists sow discord, mistrust and division. They promoted the idea that there are first- and second-class Chileans. All that received a resounding “no”.
Why did Chileans reject that proposal for a Constitution?
Because the text didn’t solve people’s problems. It gave answers to “problems” that were only relevant to a government absolutely disconnected from the people and to a group of doctrinaires that have no connection with ordinary Chileans.
A sectarian utopia?
The text proposed a kind of “refoundation” of our homeland, when the only thing people are really looking for is to “live better.” That is why a constant attack on our symbols, an enormous contempt for our values and an omission of our most important institutions was unleashed around the constituent process.
That new majority, 62% rejection, is a defeat for whom?
It is a defeat for the “Octubrist left,” for the radical left and for the government of Gabriel Boric.
What is the ‘Octubrist left‘?
It is the left that radicalized the demonstrations of October 2019, which unleashed a series of acts of vandalism, that advocated violence, that launched systematic attacks on strategic points and generated rhetoric that pontificated that “everything old is bad, everything new is good.” That was the left that lost.
Who won this Sunday?
Those who love Chile, those who have common sense and those who seek to live better without harming others.
The government will open a new constituent process. Is this good for Chile?
Yes, President Boric has already announced it. I think this is a decision that has to be made in Congress and in front of the people. Almost 6 million voted to approve the inbound plebiscite, but there are even more, almost 8 million, who rejected this plebiscite. The approval now did not reach 4 million 900 thousand.
So, many who supported the idea of a new constituent changed their minds…
Government and politicians cannot turn a deaf ear to the message from the polls, but it must be interpreted correctly. Many of those who wanted a new Constitution in 2020 wanted better access to water, better pensions, better support in case of serious economic needs, better quality of life, better housing and endless real problems.
That was not properly reflected in the Convention…
No. And these problems can and should be addressed, offering concrete solutions, from Congress and with the support of a competent Executive, without the need to go through a new constitutional process.
It’s the same job as always. Work for our Chile that suffers from inflation, insecurity, terrorism and uncontrolled immigration. That is what inspires our Republican bench and our party in general. We are happy, because we avoided the worst, but there is still a lot to be done: the attacks in the south continue, the unleashed violence continues, crime continues uncontrolled, and inflation continues to affect the lives of Chileans. As long as those problems exist, we can’t rest.