Chavez launches re-election bid

Chavez launches re-election bid

President Hugo Chavez sang, danced and gave a marathon speech at the launch of his re-election bid, offering a preview of a campaign in which he is likely to push his limits trying to show Venezuelans he is emerging from cancer’s shadow.

Chavez appeared tired, bloated and pale when he walked into the National Electoral Council to register his candidacy on Monday. But later he exuded energy while singing along with a band playing a folk tune, and he seemed in his element as he delivered a fiery speech that lasted nearly three hours. “We’re just warming up our engines,” Chavez said.

Then he took a jab at his rival, saying opposition candidate Henrique Capriles would “run out of gasoline.”

The 57-year-old president has limited his recent public appearances after undergoing cancer treatment in Cuba, and he arrived at the elections office riding atop a truck.

Capriles, in contrast, flaunted his youthful energy on Sunday by leading a huge crowd of supporters to the same elections office, working up a sweat as he walked and jogged 10 km across the city.
Chavez said that despite his battle with cancer, he’s ready to campaign and win by a “knockout” in the October 7 election.

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