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Venezuela sets presidential election for April 14

Saturday - 3/9/2013, 10:40pm  ET

CARACAS, Venezuela (AP) -- Venezuelans will go to the polls April 14 to choose a successor to the late President Hugo Chavez.

Acting President Nicolas Maduro will run as the ruling party candidate and the coordinator of the opposition coalition says Henrique Capriles is being offered that bloc's candidacy. Capriles lost to Chavez in an October election.

Chavez anointed Maduro as his chosen successor before undergoing surgery in December for the cancer that led to his death Tuesday.

The constitution mandated the election be held within 30 days of Chavez's March 5 death, but the date picked falls outside that period. Critics of the socialist government already complained that officials violated the constitution by swearing in Vice President Nicolas Maduro as acting leader Friday night.

Some people have speculated Venezuela will not be ready to organize the vote in time, but the elections council chief says the country's electronic voting system is fully prepared.


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