Nicaragua ruling party widens majority in Congress after vote

November 15, 2016 8:20 PM EST

Daniel Ortega, Nicaragua's current president and presidential candidate from the ruling Sandinista National Liberation Front, speaks to the media as his wife and vice presidental candidate Rosario Murillo looks on after casting their vote at a polling sta


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MANAGUA (Reuters) - Nicaraguan leader Daniel Ortega's party strengthened its majority in the country's Congress after his landslide re-election earlier this month, the country's electoral authority said on Tuesday.

Ortega, a former Marxist guerilla and the head of the Sandinista National Liberation Front (FSLN) party, won his third consecutive term in the election on Nov. 6, as voters cheered years of solid economic growth and overlooked criticism he is installing a family dynasty.

The electoral authority, which needed more than a week to tally results from across the country including isolated communities, said Ortega's Sandinistas won 71 of the 92 seats in Congress, up from the 63 seats they won in the 2011 election.

The party of Ortega's main opponent, the center-right Liberal Constitutionalist Party's (PLC) Maximino Rodriguez, will have 13 seats, with one more guaranteed by the constitution for Rodriguez.

Fusing his militant past with a more business-friendly approach, the 71-year-old Ortega stands in stark contrast to many once-dominant Latin American leaders, whose popularity has plummeted in recent years after failing to guarantee gains in economic prosperity.

(Reporting by Ivan Castro; Editing by Cynthia Osterman)



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