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Chavez Asks Venezuelans for Extended Term

President Hugo Chavez is looking to lengthen his term as leader by asking Venezuelans to overlook the constitutional ammendment that would not allow him to run after 2012, Yahoo News reported. Chavez says that he is the only leader who can transform Venezuela into a socialist state.

People had been waiting in line before the polls opened at 6 a.m. and according to Chavez, 40 percent of those people registered before noon.

Those who support Chavez cite his record of giving unwealthy Venezuelans free education, quality healthcare, and cheap food. Those against Chavez say he is too powerful, since the election council, courts, and legislature are all controlled by him.

Venezuela has had 15 referendums already during Chavez's presidency and Chavez says that another referendum may be in the works, even if he loses.

Both Ecuador and Bolivia have already changed their constitutions to allow a less stringent re-election process. Nicaragua is also planning to propose an amendment that would allow their president, Daniel Ortega, to run for another term in office.

The Obama Administration has so far played a quiet role in in regards to Venezuela, The New York Times reported.

“That’s an internal matter with regard to Venezuela,? Robert Wood, a State Department spokesman, said.