Image: Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez holds the national flag while celebrating from a balcony at the Miraflores Palace in Caracas
Tomas Bravo / Reuters

TODAY   |  October 08, 2012

Chavez victory seals brand of socialism

In Venezuela, Hugo Chavez won another 6-year term as president of the oil-rich nation with official results showing the socialist leader garnering 54 percent of the vote. NBC’s Kerry Sanders reports.

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>>> an unprecedented third term for hugo chavez as the socialist leader is re-elected in venezuela . kerry sanders is live with more from caracas, good morning.

>> reporter: good morning, natalie. the official result showed pentagon hugo chavez won that unprecedented third term with 54% of the vote. the newspaper headline here says it all, "six more years." for chavis's supporters, his re-election is an emotional moment in history. fireworks filled the skies. as the street party continued well into the early morning hours. a chavez victory shows supporters his brand of socialism is here to stay.

>> we want to live in socialism.

>> reporter: hugo chavez , 58 years old, a star among the poor in south america was himself surrounded by a hollywood star sunday, actor danny glover , a chavez supporter. for almost 14 years chavez socialist revolution has captured the imagination of the poor here, in large part because he's taken this nation's oil wealth and used its profits to give away free homes and subsidize grocery bills.

>> hugo chavez .

>> reporter: but opposite candidate enheek capriles says the oil wealth has been siphoned by the government. many of his supporters say they will leave venezuela , likely destination, the united states .

>> i love venezuela . we'll continue fighting for freedom.

>> reporter: president hugo chavez is battling cancer. were it to take his life in the first four years of his life the vice president would serve for only 30 days , just enough time to stage a new election. natalie?

>> kerry sanders in caracas, venezuela . thank you, kerry.