The Portuguese electorate was warned on Tuesday (2 December) that the re-election of President Ramalho Eanes would throw the country into turmoil.
January 3, 1980 SV Portuguese President, General Ramalho Eanes congratulates Prime Minister Francisco Sa Carneiro, and Sa Carneiro makes inauguration speech
SV Sa Carneiro continues speech
GV EXTERIOR AND BACK VIEW Eanes campaigning for re-election to Presidency in Loule (2 shots)
SV Eanes addressing his supporters and PAN Crowd cheering and applauding
CU Democratic Alliance candidate for Presidency, General Antonio Soares Carneiro walking through crowd of supporters and embracing colleague as crowd cheers (2 shots)
SV Soares Carneiro gestures to supporters PAN TO Crowd with banners and flags
October 5, 1980 SV Voters examining lists outside polling station in Lisbon and INTERIOR People casting votes inside polling station (3 shots)
GV ZOOM INTO SV Prime Minister Sa Carneiro addressing Democratic Alliance supporter
SV Right-wing candidate for President General Pires Veloso casting his vote in 1976 election
GV Portuguese neo-Fascists give Fascist salute and sing in Lisbon square
GV ZOOM INTO CU Communist candidate Carlos Brito addressing supporters
GV EXTERIOR PAN ACROSS Communists at rally carrying banners and singing "Venceremos"
GV Leaders on rostrum in front of banner denouncing government of Democratic Alliance, PAN TO Crowd giving solidarity salute
GV Farmers in Evora on trucks with banners preparing to demonstrate (2 shots)
CU PULL OUT TO GV Women standing in front of trucks
SV INTERIOR Eanes addressing crowd in Faro and PAN Crowd applauding
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Background: The Portuguese electorate was warned on Tuesday (2 December) that the re-election of President Ramalho Eanes would throw the country into turmoil. The allegation came from Prime Minister Francisco Sa Carneiro, whose Democratic Alliance was returned to power in early October. The ruling right-wing alliance has put forward its own candidate--former Commando Officer, General Antonio Soares Carneiro. The Prime Minister has warned throughout the campaign that a vote for left-wing General Eanes means a return to power for the Communists. And both the Prime Minister and Deputy Prime Minister Diogo Freitas Do Amaral are threatening to quite if General Eanes is returned.
SYNOPSIS: With the defeat of Dr. Mario Soares' Socialist coalition last year, President Eanes dissolved Parliament and paved the way for last December's elections in which the Democratic Alliance triumphed. Prime Minister Sa Carneiro formed the first all-civilian government since the revolution of 1974 ended a right-wing dictatorship.
General Eanes is standing for a second five-year term as President. His opponents allege that if re-elected General Eanes will become the defender of a country led by the Communists. General Eanes consistently defends the democratic rights of the Communists, but his supporters also point out that it was General Eanes who invited Prime Minister Sa Carneiro to form a government last December.
The man the Democratic Alliance has put forward to defeat General Eanes is General Soares Carneiro. The fervent anti-Communist calls himself the "candidate of reconciliation". And he says, if elected, he will leave the running of the country to Prime Minister Sa Carneiro and his government.
October's general election gave more than half the vote to the Democratic Alliance. Its platform included ridding the constitution of radical socialist ideals and opening up the economy to private enterprise.
But Prime Minister Sa Carneiro insists that his government will not be able to carry out its programme if General Eanes remains in the Presidency.
There are five minority candidates, including the right-wing General Pires Veloso. And there are fears that the one or two percent these candidates might win could split the difference between General Eanes and General Soares Carneiro.
Portugal's political spectrum continues to include neo-Fascist groups, who would prefer a return to dictatorship. This summer (June 1980) a neo-Fascist rally in Lisbon attracted hundred of followers. But President Eanes urged the Portuguese people not to be attracted to authoritarian formulas to solve the country's problems.
The Communists put forward Senhor Carlos Brito as their candidate. He said that the Communists main goal was to make sure General Soares Carneiro--who he alleges served the Salazar dictatorship, is defeated at the polls. But on Tuesday (2 December) Senhor Brito withdrew from the race and threw his support behind the re-election of President Eanes. He explained that the Communists only fielded a candidate to explain the Communist position to the electorate. But he said President eanes would best serve the party's interests in government.
The agrarian policies of the Democratic Alliance are opposed by many of the farmers who work on the Communist-controlled collective farms, set up in 1975. But the government intends to do on returning land to former land owners. And the Prime Minister complains that the return of President Eanes will mean continued labour unrest.
But public opinion polls continue to show the incumbent well ahead of General Soares Carneiro. According to a report in the Financial Times of London, Portuguese voters generally associate President Eanes with the halt of radical left-wing advances in 1975, and the continuing struggle to build a workable democracy.