Palau Elections Today

At 7:00 this morning the elections for the Republic of Palau began.  For weeks candidates have been using television, sildenafil radio and village visits to secure the votes.  Current President Johnson Toribiong, an attorney, is facing off with the former President and current Senator Tommy Remengesau for the highest office.  Toribiong seeks a second term while Remengesau seeks a return to the office that he held from 2000 to 2008.  If elected, it would be Remengesau’s 3rd term as Palau’s President.  Palau law restricts an individual to two consecutive terms as President, but does not restrict terms when there is a break in between.  After being a Senator, Vice-president, President and Senator again, Tommy Remengesau Jr. could return to the office of Palau’s President.

For Vice-President, the race is close between current Vice –President Mariur and challenger Antonio Bells.  Mariur is currently acting as Vice-President and the Minister of Finance while Bells is an outspoken former Delegate, now challenging the current government.
In this 2012 election there are 34 candidates running for 13 senate seats and an additional  38 candidates to fill Palau’s 16 states delegates.
While most of Palau’s 16 states have only two delegates running, the state of Ngiwal has four and the state of Sonsorol is offering only one candidate, Celestine Yangilmau.
Palau polls are open from 7a until 7p.   Counting will begin at 8p with ballots being manually verified before counting.  Unlike the primary election, the votes for the general election will be counted by machine which has been made possible with the assistance of the Guam Election Commission.  Off-island votes are expected to have a significacant impact on the election results and will not be counted until a week after the election date to allow abseentee votes to be posted.  In the 2008 Election, Toribiong won over opponent Camsek Chin by less then 300 votes.
Counting is expected to continue late into the night and OTV will be live on the scene to bring you results as they happen.
OTV will update the election totals online as they are available.
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