2014 Panamanian general election

Last updated
Panamanian general election, 2014
Flag of Panama.svg
  2009 4 May 2014 (2014-05-04) 2019  
  Juan Carlos Varela (2014) 3x4 Cropped.jpg Jose Domingo Arias (2013) 4x3 Cropped.jpg Juan Carlos Navarro (2013) 3x4 Cropped.png
Nominee Juan Carlos Varela José Domingo Arias Juan Carlos Navarro
Party Panameñista CD PRD
Running mate Isabel Saint Malo Marta Linares de Martinelli Gerardo Solís
Popular vote724,762581,828521,842

Elecciones Panama Resultados 2014.png
In purple provinces won by Varela, Arias in aqua and Navarro in blue.

President before election

Ricardo Martinelli
Democratic Change

Elected President

Juan Carlos Varela
Panameñista Party

Coat of arms of Panama.svg
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General elections were held in Panama on 4 May 2014. [1] Due to constitutional term limits, Incumbent President Ricardo Martinelli was ineligible for a second consecutive term. Incumbent Vice President Juan Carlos Varela of the Partido Panameñista was declared the victor with 39% of the votes. [2]

Panama A Republic in Central America

Panama, officially the Republic of Panama, is a country in Central America, bordered by Costa Rica to the west, Colombia to the southeast, the Caribbean Sea to the north, and the Pacific Ocean to the south. The capital and largest city is Panama City, whose metropolitan area is home to nearly half the country's 4 million people.

Constitution of Panama

Panama is governed under the Constitution of Panama of 1972 as amended in 1978, 1983, 1993, 1994, and 2004. This is Panama's fourth constitution, previous constitutions having been adopted in 1904, 1941, and 1946. The differences among these constitutions have been matters of emphasis and have reflected the political circumstances existing at the time of their formulation.

The incumbent is the current holder of an office. This term is usually used in reference to elections, in which races can often be defined as being between an incumbent and non-incumbent(s). For example, in the 2017 Hungarian presidential election, János Áder was the incumbent, because he had been the president in the term before the term for which the election sought to determine the president. A race without an incumbent is referred to as an open seat.


Electoral system

Of the 71 members of the National Assembly, 26 were elected in single-member constituencies and 45 by proportional representation in multi-member constituencies. Each district with more than 40,000 inhabitants forms a constituency. Constituencies elect one MP for every 30,000 residents and an additional representative for every fraction over 10,000. [3]

National Assembly (Panama) legislative body of Panama

The National Assembly, formerly the Legislative Assembly(Asamblea Legislativa), is the legislative branch of the government of the Republic of Panama.

Districts of Panama sub-divisions of provinces and some of the comarcas in Panama

The provinces of Panama and some of the comarcas are divided into districts (distrito). The district are further divided into corregimientos of Panama

In single-member constituencies MPs are elected using the first-past-the-post system. In multi-member constituencies MPs are elected using party list proportional representation according to a double quotient; the first allocation of seats uses a simple quotient, further seats are allotted using the quotient divided by two, with any remaining seats are awarded to the parties with the greatest remainder. [3]

First-past-the-post voting voting system in which voters select one candidate, and the candidate who receives more votes than any other candidate wins

A first-past-the-post electoral system is one in which voters indicate on a ballot the candidate of their choice, and the candidate who receives the most votes wins. This is sometimes described as winner takes all. First-past-the-post voting is a plurality voting method. FPTP is a common, but not universal, feature of electoral systems with single-member electoral divisions, and is practised in close to one third of countries. Notable examples include Canada, India, the United Kingdom, and the United States, as well as most of their current or former colonies and protectorates.

Proportional representation (PR) characterizes electoral systems in which divisions in an electorate are reflected proportionately in the elected body --- each citizen voter being represented proportionately as by Evaluative Proportional Representation, or by each party being represented proportionately. If n% of the electorate support a particular political party, then roughly n% of seats will be won by that party. The essence of such systems is that all votes contribute to the result - not just a plurality, or a bare majority. The most prevalent forms of proportional representation all require the use of multiple-member voting districts, as it is not possible to fill a single seat in a proportional manner. In fact, the implementations of PR that achieve the highest levels of proportionality tend to include districts with large numbers of seats.

Presidential candidates

Seven candidates contested the election: [4]

José Domingo Arias Panamanian politician

José Domingo Arias Villalaz is a Panamanian economist and politician, and was an unsuccessful candidate in the 2014 presidential elections.

Democratic Change (Panama)

Democratic Change is a centre-right political party in Panama.

Juan Carlos Navarro (politician) Panamanian businessman

Juan Carlos Navarro is a Panamanian businessman, environmentalist, and politician and was the Mayor of Panama City, Panama until June 30, 2009.

Opinion polls

Poll sourceDateJosé Domingo Arias
Juan Carlos Navarro
Juan Carlos Varela
Dichter & Neira [5] March 201439%32%26%
Ipsos [5] March 201433%31%26%
Dichter & Neira [6] 23 April 201435%30%32%
Ipsos [7] 23 April 201433.9%34.2%29.1%



Juan Carlos Varela Panameñista Party 724,76239.09
José Domingo Arias Democratic Change 581,82831.38
Juan Carlos Navarro Democratic Revolutionary Party 521,84228.14
Genaro López Broad Front for Democracy 11,1270.60
Juan JovanéIndependent10,8050.58
Esteban RodríguezIndependent2,2400.12
Gerardo BarrosoIndependent1,5980.09
Invalid/blank votes37,106
Registered voters/turnout2,457,40176.76
Source: Election Tribunal
Popular Vote
Democratic Change
Dem. Revolutionary
Broad Front for Dem.

National Assembly

Democratic Change 573,60333.7230+16
Democratic Revolutionary Party 535,74731.4925–1
Panameñista Party 343,88020.2212–10
Nationalist Republican Liberal Movement 121,8157.1620
People's Party 56,6293.3310
Broad Front for Democracy 17,2241.010New
Independents 52,1843.071–1
Invalid/blank votes146,718
Registered voters/turnout2,457,40175.19
Source: Election Tribunal
Popular Vote
Democratic Change
Dem. Revolutionary
Broad Front for Dem.
Democratic Change
Dem. Revolutionary

Although Democratic Change won 30 seats and MOLIRENA 2, rival candidates in 10 of the circuits won by CD and 1 of those won by MOLIRENA said there were irregularities throughout the elections that favored the winning parties. As such, the Electoral Tribunal of Panama annulled the results in those circuits and new special elections were to be held every Sunday from 16 November 2014 to determine which candidate would win those 11 seats.

As of now[ when? ], the results are:

Election DateCircuitCandidateParty
16 November 20147-1Carlos "Tito" AfúDemocratic Change (CD)
23 November 20142-4Noriel SalernoDemocratic Change (CD)
30 November 20147-2Mariela VegaDemocratic Change (CD)
14 December 20144-1Miguel FanovichNationalist Republican Liberal Movement (MOLIRENA)
14 December 20144-1Florentino ÁbregoPanameñista Party

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  1. Panama IFES
  2. "Vice President Juan Carlos Varela wins Panama's presidential race, topping field of 7". U.S. News. 4 May 2014.
  3. 1 2 Electoral system IPU
  4. Panama IFES
  5. 1 2 Zissis, Carin (28 March 2014). "Poll Update: Panama's Ruling-Party Candidate ahead in Possible Close Race". Americas Society / Council of the Americas.
  6. "Intención de Voto Presidencial - Encuesta TVN y Dichter & Neira". TVN Noticias Panamá. 23 April 2014. Archived from the original on 3 May 2014.
  7. "Panamá Opina - Telemetro Reporta". Telemetro Reporta. 23 April 2014.