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February 3rd, 2014 (InsideCostaRica.com) Election observers from the Organization of American States (OAS) praised the transparency of yesterday’s general elections in Costa Rica, but are recommending that the Supreme Electoral Tribunal (TSE) take steps to normalize pre-election polling in the country.
“In terms of transparency, the mission noted that campaign funding saw an important advance (…) reports of private contributions are fully available to the public, contributing to transparency,” the head of the OAS’s Observer Mission said.
However, observers did recommend that the TSE determine a base methodology for pre-election polling and surveys, saying that a more academic and scientific method could be put in place with oversight from the TSE.
The observers pointed out that some pre-election polls were conducted by telephone, others by household, and still others were a mixture of the two.
Observers pointed out that pre-election polls could play a role in candidates’ access to funding and fundraising – or lack of it.
Centrist Luis Guillermo Solis took a surprise lead and appeared to win the popular vote in Costa Rica’s presidential election on Sunday, despite several polls that appeared in the media putting him significantly behind ruling party candidate, Johnny Araya and Jose Maria Villalta of the leftist Broad Front (FA) party.
Neither Solis nor Araya garnered the necessary 40% of the vote to win the election outright however, and will faceoff in a runoff election in April.
None of the observers’ recommendations are binding.