Former Vice President Lenin Moreno is maintaining his lead in presidential election polls but Cynthia Viteri has overtaken Guillermo Lasso for second position in two recent polls.
The Mercado public opinion survey organization, puts Moreno in the lead with 33.2%, Viteri in second with 16.4%, Lasso in third at 14.3% followed closely by Paco Moncayo at 13.7%. According to Mercado, Viteri’s move to second is the result of Moncayo’s entry into the race.
Several other candidates, including banana baron Alvaro Noboa, are polling in the single digits.
It is still possible that other candidates could enter the race. Ecuador’s National Elections Council (CNE) began accepting applications of presidential candidates on October 19, a process that continues through November 18.
Viteri and Lasso represent center-right political parties, while Moncayo is a leftist who has the support of labor and indigenous groups, among other groups. Moreno represents Rafael Correa’s center-left Pais party and has pledged to continue many of Correa’s policies.
Although Moreno appears to have a strong hold on first place, his numbers are not currently good enough to avoid a run-off election. Under Ecuadorian electoral law, if no candidate manages to win an absolute majority, he or she must poll 40 percent of the vote and be ahead of the second-place finisher by at least 10 percent for an outright victory.
Political campaigning officially begins January 3 with the election scheduled for February 19. If necessary, a run-off election would be April 2.