Venezuelan socialist dictator Nicolás Maduro used a national broadcast on Thursday to blame President Donald Trump’s presumptive loss in the 2020 election on the legitimate president of Venezuela, Juan Guaidó, whom he called “stupid,” an “imbecile,” and a “rat.”
Maduro regularly spends hours broadcasting live on state-controlled television. While he typically reserves his longest broadcasts for Sunday night, he often also appeared on television on weekdays:
— Nicolás Maduro (@NicolasMaduro) November 19, 2020
Maduro’s last presidential term ended in January, but he refused to step down, claiming an illegitimate election in May 2018 guaranteed him more years in office. In response, the National Assembly used its constitutional powers to appoint Guaidó as the legitimate interim president, tasked with organizing a free and fair election as soon as possible. Maduro maintains control of the presidential palace and the military, so Guaidó has failed to enact any policies or take any actions to remove the socialist regime.
Prior to becoming president, Guaidó was a member of the Popular Will party, a member of the Socialist International. Guaidó’s plan to rehabilitate Venezuela, the “Plan País” (“Country Plan”), largely consists of socialist policies such as universal health care and government takeovers of major industries to use the profits for social programs. Guaidó’s lack of action to benefit the Venezuelan people has made him severely unpopular in the country, polls show.
President Trump recognized Guaidó as the legitimate president of Venezuelan and invited him to be a distinguished guest at the 2020 State of the Union speech.
Maduro argued during a broadcast allegedly about “technological sovereignty” that Trump’s decision to recognize Guaidó cost him the presidential election.
“Why did Trump fail in Venezuela? Trump’s failure in Venezuela cost him the election. The man guilty of the defeat of Donald Trump has a first name and last name in Venezuela – his name is Juan Guaidó,” Maduro said during the state television broadcast. “He is responsible for the defeat of Donald Trump.”
“And did you see what Guaidó did? The day that broadcasters in the U.S. announced that projections, I think it was November 7, showed Joe Biden to be the winner, five minutes later Guaidó the rat recognized him on Twitter, he betrayed Donald Trump, who is his father,” Maduro continued. “The creator of the Frankenstein, of the little monster, is named Donald Trump. And he betrayed him! He stabbed his father, he committed patricide. … He didn’t even wait a day!”
— Juan Guaidó (@jguaido) November 7, 2020
Maduro then addressed the American president.
“We would have understood each other, Trump,” Maduro said. “I know this message will reach you, we would have understood each other on a basis of relations of respect and cooperation between the U.S. and Venezuela. … You preferred to bet on an imbecile and that imbecile brought you to defeat.”
Maduro claimed that “the establishment” in the United States prevented Trump from negotiating directly with Maduro and concluded that Trump “was sent to the slaughterhouse” when advisers convinced him to support Guaidó.
Elsewhere in the broadcast, Maduro declared himself to be “protected by God, inshallah” and asserted that “the hatred of imperialism slides off of” him.
Maduro has previously gloated regarding the controversy surrounding the 2020 election, which has spawned several lawsuits in the past month.
“We do not interfere in the internal affairs of the United States and we hate it when they pretend to give lessons in democracy to the world,” Maduro said on November 5, two days after the presidential election. He claimed that Venezuelan elections are free and fair and, unlike in America, “electoral results are given on the very night of the elections in an exact manner.”
Maduro has scheduled legislative elections for next month, which the Organization of American States (OAS) has already decried as fraudulent. Most elections under the socialist chavista regime have been fraudulent, both in terms of vote-rigging and the prevention of true opposition candidates from running for office. In the 2018 presidential election that Maduro claims resulted in his reelection, Maduro banned any nonsocialist or -communist candidates from running against him. Voters also reported ballot irregularities and violent threats.
In addition to his criticisms of Trump on Thursday, Maduro has spread various conspiracy theories claiming, among other things, that Trump lied about testing positive for the Chinese coronavirus in October to garner sympathy prior to the election and that the president used roving militias to terrorize American voters; Maduro himself uses socialist gangs known as colectivos to assault known dissidents.
Maduro similarly accused Joe Biden of personally trying to assassinate him in 2015 but otherwise has a friendlier relationship with the former vice president.
“Venezuela, the homeland of the Liberator Simón Bolívar will always be open to dialogue and understanding with the people and the government of the United States,” Maduro said on Twitter on November 7, the same day he criticized Guaidó for congratulating Biden. “In time … we will work, hopefully, to resume decent, sincere, direct channels of dialogue between the future government of Joe Biden.”
Biden and Maduro met once, at the 2015 inauguration of Brazilian socialist former President Dilma Rousseff. On that occasion, Biden reportedly complimented Maduro’s thick hair.
Trump’s support for Guaidó was largely the product of a combination of his opposition to Maduro’s repressive regime and advice from then-National Security Adviser John Bolton, who lost his job, in part, because of his Venezuela strategy.
“I disagreed with John Bolton on his attitudes on Venezuela. I thought he was way out of line and I think I’ve proven to be right,” Trump said publicly following Bolton’s departure from the White House.
According to a report by McClatchy at the time, unnamed senior officials believed “Trump had grown weary of repeated vows from Bolton that Venezuelan President Nicolás Maduro would be out of office in short order.”
Maduro has been in power in Venezuela since the death of late dictator Hugo Chávez in 2013. Maduro has presided over a bloody socialist tenure that has resulted in the deaths of thousands of dissidents, many of them minors, in situations of police brutality. Children as young as 11 have testified that Maduro’s forces have tortured them through beatings, electrocution, and attacks with armored cars. In the Helicoide, Maduro’s premier political prison, survivors say dissidents are regularly tortured and beaten, and some have witnessed crucifixions.