March 7, 2014, 11:17 a.m.
Following the release of a poll by the newspaper Seminario Universidad on March 5, 2014, Johnny ARAYA, presidential candidate for the ruling National Liberation Party / Partido Liberación Nacional (PLN), said he would end his campaign for the presidency. ARAYA was set to face Luis Guillermo SOLÍS in a run-off election on April 6, 2014, after winning 29.71 percent of the vote in the first round of voting on February 2, 2014. Although ARAYA only lost to SOLÍS by one percent in the first round of voting, the poll showed ARAYA trailing SOLÍS by 43 percentage points. Under Costa Rican law, the election will still occur as no candidate can drop out of the election. ARAYA was quoted as saying his decision was in part to save the country money, saying “It is only prudent not to spend millions on publicity, meetings and other events. We will respect the constitutional provisions, but I will refrain from any electoral activity.” SOLÍS, running on an anti-corruption ticket, was formerly a member of the PLN, but left the party in 2005 after finding irregularities in the party’s elections.