Case 329 - High Drama in Honduras: Constitutional Crisis and the Overthrow of President Zelaya
Barrow, Lynda K.
In the pre-dawn hours of June 28, 2009, some 200 armed, hooded members of the Honduran military pulled President Manuel Zelaya from his bed, whisked him out of the presidential palace, loaded him onto a military plane, and packed him off to Costa Rica. Thus began what quickly became a full-blown crisis for Honduras and the region. This three-part case study focuses on the questions this episode raises about the nature of Honduras’ constitutional order, as well as broader questions about democratic legitimacy. Part A sets out the events leading to Zelaya’s ouster, including his political alliance with Venezuela’s President Hugo Chávez and his push to get voter approval for a National Constituent Assembly. It ends with the inauguration of a new Honduran president, Porfirio Lobo Sosa, in January 2010. Part B briefly explores the international community’s response, while Part C delves into the constitutional crisis that Zelaya’s removal fomented.