Colombians have elected the first leftist in the country's history, causing mixed reactions from Colombians in South Florida and abroad.
According to statistics on Colombia’s government voting website, most Colombians in the United States voted for Rodolfo Hernandez, the candidate who lost against leftist Gustavo Petro.
During his victory speech, Petro was emphatic that he will develop capitalism in Colombia, a promise many Colombians are unsure he will keep given his involvement with the M-19 guerrilla movement.
"I don't anticipate much of a change in terms of economic governance ... at least if you listened to him last night," said Eduardo Gamarra, the FIU Director of Latino Public Opinion Forum.
Petro is a 62-year-old former mayor of Bogota and current senator. He beat construction magnate Rodolfo Hernandez with more than 50.4% of the votes.
“I think Petro and probably the president of Chile are more social democrats, European-like and not of the Chavista orientation,” Gamarra said. “In other words, I think it's a mistake to kind of say that all of the left is a united block.”
Petro's victory adds Colombia to a list of Latin American countries that have elected leftist leaders in recent years.
At a news conference Monday, Gov. Ron DeSantis called the results of Colombia's election troubling.
"To elect a former narco-terrorist and a Marxist to lead Colombia is going to be disastrous," DeSantis said.