Who else is running for president in El Salvador?

El Salvador will hold presidential elections in February 2024.   On the ballot will be Nayib Bukele, the current president, who is running for re-election under the banner of his party Nuevas Ideas, despite a clear prohibition on second consecutive terms in the Salvadoran constitution.

But there will be candidates from other parties running for the presidency as well.   Here is a rundown on those candidates.  Other than Manuel Flores, the candidate from the FMLN, none of the candidates have significant prior political experience.  The candidates from Nuestro Tiempo and ARENA reside in the United States, and there is one woman running, for the first time in thirty years. 


The presidential candidate from ARENA is Joel Sánchez.  He is a Salvadoran businessman residing in Dallas, with no previous experience in politics. His candidacy was promoted by the civil society group Resistencia Ciudadana and the right wing party will now have this member of the Salvadoran diaspora as its candidate.  Interview with Joel Sanchez by FOCOS.


The left wing party FMLN is nominating Manuel Flores.  As a long time FMLN politician, Flores has previously been both a mayor in El Salvador and a deputy in the Legislative Assembly.  He was a lead promoter of relations between El Salvador and China.   

Nuestro Tiempo

The party Nuestro Tiempo has nominated Luis Parada for president along with his running mate Celia Medrano.  Parada is a West Point graduate, former Salvadoran military officer, and a US lawyer practicing international commercial law who led El Salvador's successful litigation with Oceana Gold.   Medrano is a prominent human rights advocate. Their candidacy was proposed by the civil society group Sumar.  


From Patriotic Salvadoran Fraternity, the candidate will be Marina Murillo, an architect, and the first woman candidate for president since 1994 in El Salvador.  From her appearance on La Tribu.

Fuerza Solidaria

From Fuerza Solidaria (Solidarity Force), the presidential candidate is Javier Renderos, a medical doctor with a gynecology clinic in the east of the country.   He was formerly a candidate for mayor of San Miguel running under the banner or ARENA.


The Salvadoran Independent Party (Spanish: Partido Independiente Salvadoreño, abbreviated PAIS) may, or may not, have nominated Rodolfo Cardozo Salguero as its candidate.   He is an agricultural engineer, but there is an intra-party conflict which may invalidate his candidacy.  

*  *  *

Nobody but Bukele has a realistic chance of winning in 2024, and the most these opposition candidates can hope for is to start some sort of a conversation on alternatives to the Bukele regime agenda for the country.   There had earlier been talk of a grand alliance among civil society and many of the political parties, but that appeared to fall apart shortly after it became public.   The existence of so many parties may allow Bukele to claim that democracy is alive and well in his country or else there would not be so many people aspiring to his job.     


Who Knows? said…
Do any of these candidates have the same degree of social media presence as Bukele?