Broad Front (Costa Rica)

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Broad Front
Partido Frente Amplio
President Patricia Mora Castellanos
Secretary-General William Rodolfo Ulloa Bonilla
Treasurer Roberto Joaquín Alfaro Zumbado
Vice-president Gerardo Vargas Varela
Subsecretary Gerardo Vargas Varela
Subtreasurer Suray Carrillo Guevara
Founder José Merino del Río
Founded 16 October 2004
Headquarters Casa Amarilla Barrio Amón
Ideology Democratic socialism
Social democracy
Green politics
21st century socialism
Political position Left-wing
Colors Yellow
Legislative Assembly
1 / 57
1 / 81
20 / 495

The Broad Front (Frente Amplio) is a left-wing political party in Costa Rica, the main component of the front is the Alternative of the Lefts Movement (Movimiento Alternativa de Izquierdas). They are defined by progressive, socialist, green, social justice, human rights and democratic ideas. Member of the Foro de Sao Paulo, part of the international Latin American Left Movement of democratic socialism.[1]

In the 2006 general elections, they won 1.1% of the legislative votes, and won one seat in the legislature, occupied by José Merino Del Rio. In the 2010 general elections they kept their seat, occupied by José María Villalta Florez-Estrada. Their Presidential Candidate was Costa Rica’s Technological Institute’s Rector Eugenio Trejos Benavides. For the 2014 election the party’s nominee was then congressman Villalta, who was receiving a lot of support according to the polls, something unusual in Costa Rica for a left-wing candidate, and even appearing in some as the frontrunner.[2] Nevertheless lost momentum after a very negative campaign especially from right-wing party Libertarian Movement and PAC's recovery after the party's candidate Luis Guillermo Solís improved his image in the debates attracting votes from the more moderate leftist electors.[3]

Villalta ended third in the presidential race with 17% of the votes, below PLN's nominee Johnny Araya and PAC’s Luis Guillermo Solís, but increased its parliamentary representation from one to nine seats. It also won one mayor in the 2016 municipal elections in the Barva canton and in alliance with PAC in Acosta and Montes de Oca.[4][5]

During the 2014-2018 legislative period the party suffered several minor scandals involving its deputies including Guanacaste’s representative and former Catholic priest Ronal Vargas's resignation after being accused of sexual harassment, deputy Ligia Falla’s use of her parliamentary office for alleged romantic encounters of her advisors, and domestic abuse accusations against two parties' deputies.

Electoral performance[edit]


Election Leader Votes % Position Government
2010 Eugenio Trejos Benavides 6,822 0.37% Increase 7/9 Opposition
2014 José María Villalta Florez-Estrada 354,479 17.25% Increase 3/13 Opposition
2018 Edgardo Araya Sibaja 16,862 0.78% Decrease 8/13 Opposition


Election Leader Votes % Seats +/– Position Government
2006 No presidential candidate 17,751 1.10%
1 / 57
Increase 1 Increase 11/27 Opposition
2010 Eugenio Trejos Benavides 68.987 3.66%
1 / 57
Increase 1 Increase 7/18 Opposition
2014 José María Villalta Florez-Estrada 221,780 13.09%
9 / 57
Increase 8 Increase 3/21 Opposition
2018 Edgardo Araya Sibaja 84,437 3.95%
1 / 57
Decrease 8 Decrease 7/25 Opposition


  1. ^ Sanchez, Isabel. "Leftist parties gaining ground as Costa Rica and El Salvador elections near". Tico Times. Retrieved 27 March 2016. 
  2. ^ Kane, Corey. "Villalta's rise and Araya's fall could upset 50 years of political dominance in Costa Rica". Tico Times. Retrieved 27 March 2016. 
  3. ^ Turner, Blair. Latin America 2015-2016. Retrieved 27 March 2016. 
  4. ^ Lehring, Gary. "Costa Rican legislative elections show growing voter dissatisfaction with traditional choices". Tico Times. Retrieved 27 March 2016. 
  5. ^ Buckman, Robert T. Latin America 2014. Retrieved 27 March 2016.