Last night, President Trump welcomed Juan Guaido of Venezuela as a guest during the State of the Union address. Republicans and Democrats applauded when Trump described Guiado as the legitimate leader of Venezuela, which has been rocked by scandals and a humanitarian crisis.

The Rochester Committee on Latin America is turning its attention to Venezuela this week, along with their concerns about the impact of US foreign policy. We discuss the state of affairs for one of Latin America’s most precarious states. Our guests:

  • Donald Kingsbury, lecturer in political science and Latin American studies, and interim director of the Munk One Program at the Munk School of Global Affairs and Public Policy at the University of Toronto
  • Vic Vinkey, member of ROCLA
  • Noelle Evans, reporter for WXXI News

Photo provided by Gabriel Marcano

The Venezuelan National Assembly split on Sunday when the National Guard blocked opposition Assembly Members from participating in a key vote to name the next Assembly president. 

In videos widely circulated on social media, Venezuelan opposition leader Juan Guaidó attempts to jump a fence to reach the congressional palace, but is blocked by soldiers in riot gear and shields. 

This week, another Latin American country announced it would stop recognizing Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro and start recognizing the leader of the opposition, Juan Guaido. The presidential crisis has consumed the country for most of this year.

The Rochester Committee on Latin America has invited Steve Ellner, an author and scholar on the region, to Rochester to discuss one of the most controversial political hot spots in the world. He'll give a presentation for ROCLA Wednesday evening. Ellner is our guest for the hour. In studio:

  • Steve Ellner, author, associate managing editor of the Journal of Latin American Perspectives, and retired professor 
  • Vic Vinky, member of ROCLA's Steering Committee