Christian People's Party (Peru)
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|Partido Popular Cristiano |
Christian People's Party
|Headquarters||Alfonso Ugarte 1484, Lima, Peru|
|Ideology||Christian Democracy Centrism|
|International affiliation||Christian Democrat International, International Democrat Union (observer)|
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The Christian People's Party (Spanish: Partido Popular Cristiano) is a centrist political party based on Christian Democracy. It was founded in 1966 by a group of Peruvian Christian Democracy (Democracia Social Cristiana) dissidents, led by Luis Bedoya Reyes.
It is the third oldest active party in Peru, trailing to the Peruvian Aprista Party and Popular Action. In 2000 its inscription was renewed, and it became part of National Unity, albeit not in a permanent basis.
Leaders of the party have included Mario Polar Ugarteche, Roberto Ramírez del Villar, Ernesto Alayza Grundy, Felipe Osterling Parodi, and Alberto Borea Odría.
The party was founded in December 18, 1966 by a group of members of the Democracia Cristiana party that defected by ideological motifs. While their former party supported a constitutional break to accelerate the reforms needed by the country, the founders of the PPC, led by Luis Bedoya Reyes still believed in the constitutional order. Thus they retired from Democracia Cristiana and founded the new party.
History of the PPC
Military dictatorship of Velasco
In 1968, General Juan Velasco Alvarado staged a coup d'etat against President Fernando Belaúnde Terry, an ally of Luis Bedoya Reyes. The PPC didn't support the military regime and was one of its most fierce opponents, along with the Partido Aprista Peruano (APRA). The latter was declared illegal.
Constituent Assembly of 1978
In 1979 the government of General Francisco Morales Bermúdez called for elections for a Constituent Assembly. The PPC attained the second place in the polls, after the APRA. Bedoya Reyes, widely preferred by the Assembly members to become its President, gave the position to the veteran APRA leader, Víctor Raúl Haya de la Torre.
General Elections of 1980
Luis Bedoya Reyes ran as the PPC's candidate for President in the General Elections of 1980, with Ernesto Alayza and Roberto Ramírez del Villar as First Vice-president and Second Vice-president. Despite Bedoya finishing in the third place, the PPC got six Senators elected, as well as some deputies.
During the elections, the PPC allied with the soon-to-be elected President Fernando Belaúnde Terry, from Acción Popular. The PPC-Alianza Popular coalition gave Belaúnde the majority in the Senate and in the Deputies Chamber. The coalition also designated four PPC members as Ministers, including its leader Bedoya Reyes and Felipe Osterling Parodi.
General Elections of 1985
For the General Elections of 1985, the coalition with Acción Popular was finished, and thus, both parties presented separate candidates. Bedoya Reyes finished in third again, trailing behind Alfonso Barrantes Lingán. During Alan García's government, the PPC criticised the heterodox economic model designed by the APRA.
The PPC had only a few members in both chambers. Its most important representatives were Felipe Osterling Parodi in the Senate of Peru and Javier Bedoya de Vivanco -son of the founder of the PPC- in the Deputies Chamber. When Alan García sought to take control of private banking, Luis Bedoya Reyes and Lourdes Flores Nano rallied in the streets against the proposal. They were joined in the manifestations by the famous Peruvian writer Mario Vargas Llosa. The movement did stop the government from passing the polemical Law.
General Elections of 1990
In 1990 the PPC enters a liberal coalition with Acción Popular and Mario Vargas Llosa's Movimiento Libertad (Liberty Movement), forming the Frente Democrático (FREDEMO, Democratic Front), which launched Vargas Llosa as a candidate for the Presidency. Although he didn't get elected, the coalition's participation in the Deputies Chamber was a success: it got 25 representatives, attaining the majority, including Javier Bedoya de Vivanco, one of the most voted deputies nationwide.
Democratic Constituent Congress of 1992
The PPC held the Presidency of the Senate under Felipe Osterling Parodi's leadership when, in 1992, Alberto Fujimori staged a self-coup, dissolving both Chambers of the Congress, neutralising the FREDEMO and the APRA.
Fujimori held polls to elect a Democratic Constituent Congress, where his party, Cambio 90-Nueva Mayoría, got an absolute majority. The PPC was divided between those who wanted to be part of the elections and those who didn't want to. Amongst those who didn't want to participate where Natale Amprimo, Alberto Borea Odría and Alberto Andrade Carmona, arguing that the PPC shouldn't be part of a non-democratic process. In the other hand, Luis Bedoya Reyes, Lourdes Flores and Xavier Barrón contended that the PPC should present itself to guarantee democracy in the Constituent Congress. The decision of being part of the elections led to the resignations of Amprimo, Borea Odría and Andrade Carmona. The PPC was the second most-voted party, but it was far behind of Cambio 90-Nueva Mayoría.
General Elections of 1995 and 2000
In the General Elections of 1995, the PPC nominated Lourdes Flores as its candidate for President, but in the end she resigned to support Javier Pérez de Cuéllar's candidacy. Fujimori won without a run-off and the PPC only got the seventh place in the elections for Congressmen .
When Alberto Fujimori wanted to run for a third period in the General Elections of 1995, he was strongly opposed by the PPC. Congressmen Xavier Barrón, Antero Flores Aráoz and Lourdes Flores proposed a law project that gave way to a referendum, where the people could decide whether Fujimori could participate in the elections. The Congress, controlled by Cambio 90-Nueva Mayoría didn't let the Law pass. After the proposal of the law, the National Jury of Elections withdrew the PPC's inscription as a party, so it couldn't present candidates for the Congress. Because of that, Alejandro Toledo's Perú Posible party decides to support the PPC, including Xavier Barrón and Antero Flores Aráoz as guests in its list for the Congress. Both them got elected as Congressmen.
General Elections of 2001 and 2006
In 2001, during the interim government of Acción Popular's Valentín Paniagua, the PPC recouped its inscription. It became part of a political coalition with Renovación Nacional and Cambio Radical, named Unidad Nacional (National Unity). The alliance's candidate for President was Lourdes Flores, who achieved the third place by a narrow margin.
In 2006 the Unidad Nacional coalition continued, maintaining Lourdes Flores as its candidate. She didn't pass to the round-off, again for a narrow margin, and again trailing behind Alan García, who would become Peru's President for a second time.
- ↑ Vargas Llosa, Mario, "El Pez en el Agua", Seix Barral, Barcelona, 1993, pg. 44