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U.S. International Electoral Observation Delegation 
Jeb Bush (This full-page ad from Jeb Bush appeared in the Nicaraguan newspaper La Prensa on Monday, October 29, less than a week before the elections on Sunday, November 4. The page was bordered in red, white, and blue, giving the impression that it was from the U.S. president himself. It appeared in Spanish, and is translated here into English.)

The Brother of the President of the United States


"This November, Nicaragua will choose a new president. This decision rests where it should, in the hands of the Nicaraguan voting public. At the same time, we in Florida want the people of Nicaragua to know that they are not alone in making this decision.

"The elements which have made of Florida and the United States a place where exiles from diverse countries have found success - democracy, respect for law, transparency and confidence in public institutions - are being developed in many Latin American countries. Florida benefits when its neighbors adopt the successful formulas - free elections, open markets, the integrity of the public sector - which have produced such good results in our country.

"However, this formula for success is not automatic. Not everyone has the same commitment to these successful free institutions...As I look at Latin America today, I'm reminded of the motto which is written above the entrance to the US National Archives: "The Past Is Prologue." The past is without doubt the key indicator of the future. In a world which has been transformed during the last decade through political and economic openings, it is inconceivable that a people would choose to return to a totalitarian past.

"The past and present of Daniel Ortega clearly indicate that he neither understands nor accepts the basic principles of freedom, democracy and the free market. Some say he has changed, that the years out of power have convinced him of the necessity for genuine democracy, for open markets, and for the maintaining of good relations with his neighbors and with the United States. This is what Ortega would want us to believe.

"Daniel Ortega is an enemy of everything the United States represents. Further, he is a friend of our enemies. Ortega has a relationship of more than 30 years with states and individuals who shelter and condone international terrorism.

"By contrast Enrique Bolanos is a man whose past promises a future of freedom. I knew him for the first time fifteen years ago, before the end of the Cold War, when freedom was not yet secured in many parts of the world. He spoke with clarity of purpose and with precision about the importance of democracy, of the free market, and of the absolute necessity to have a public sector with integrity. He not only spoke about these ideas but also defended them valiantly in the hostile and repressive climate created by the Sandinistas. Thanks to this experience, I can say that Enrique Bolanos will be an excellent leader for Nicaragua.

"To construct democracy is not easy. It puts a leader's commitment to the test as well as his will to hold to the true path. This is why Latin America needs people whose valorous past points to a promising future. Latin America needs leaders like Enrique Bolanos, people whose history shows a commitment to the construction of prosperous economies and solid democracies which are the necessary base for reinforcing bonds of brotherhood with Florida, just as with the whole United States of America.

Jeb Bush, Governor of Florida."

2001 Nicaraguan Elections

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