In many respects, 2016 was a complex year for Ecuador. On the economic front, the country officially fell into recession. The earthquake that took place in April exacerbated the economic emergency. In the political realm, presidential approval declined due to the recession. In this context, the electoral campaign for the succession of Rafael Correa started: pro-government forces considered several options for their presidential bid and the opposition did not forge a united candidacy. Considering the imminent presidential change, some initial assessments of Correa’s tenure were anticipated. This article highlights Ecuadorian hyper-presidentialism—both in its institutional design and in its authoritarian practice— as well as the deterioration of the quality of democracy and its legitimacy.
- Quality of democracy