Updated Wednesday, Oct. 9, 4:45 p.m.
In front of a scrum of reporters outside his home in Montes de Oca, in eastern San José, Social Christian Unity Party presidential candidate Dr. Rodolfo Hernández announced Wednesday afternoon that he was leaving the race again for the second time in six days, according to Channel 7 Telenoticias.
PUSC Internal Electoral Tribunal President Mario Redonet said that he received Hernández’s signed resignation at 1:13 p.m. Wednesday. Redonet said that the resignation was “irrevocable.”
In his resignation, dated Oct. 8, Hernández mentioned “unacceptable interference” and accused “young politicians” of trying to control him.
“They thought they could play me, that they could order me around and that my warnings were inconsequential. They were wrong!” he wrote.
Hernández threw the presidential race here into confusion late last week when he released a statement announcing he that was abandoning his presidential aspirations because of conflicts with the PUSC leadership.
On Saturday, Oct. 5, the candidate announced that he would return to the race after supporters marched on his home waving the PUSC’s red-and-blue flag from the La Hispanidad fountain in San Pedro, east of the capital.
Hernández stressed that this was not his second resignation, noting that his return to politics was conditional on the resignation of three PUSC chiefs.
The former candidate said Wednesday afternoon that he could not continue his campaign with party president Gerardo Vargas, saying the party leader was “uncompromising.”
“I never thought it would end this way,” Hernández concluded in the letter.
Doctor takes to social media
Soon after Hernández announced his campaign’s conclusion, social media users started calling him a payaso or “clown.” Hernández took to Facebook, posting a video response to his critics.
“These hateful people call me a ‘clown.’ Could it be that this is where we find ourselves today? Is being honest and not accepting the influences of others being a clown? Is it that in Costa Rica today to be frank and honest with people, respect others, and stand up for what’s just is being a clown?” he asked in the video. “Are those who lie and take advantage of others the illuminated ones of our country?”
Watch the video from Hernández’s campaign Facebook page here:
This story is developing. Follow updates at ticotimes.net