WASHINGTON, April 15 The White House said on
Monday that auditing Venezuela's close election that was
narrowly won by Nicholas Maduro, the late socialist leader Hugo
Chavez's chosen successor, was a necessary and prudent step.
Maduro edged out opposition challenger Henrique Capriles
with 50.7 percent of the votes, according to election board
returns. Capriles took 49.1 percent.
"Given the tightness of the result - around 1 percent of the
votes cast separate the candidates - the opposition candidate
and at least one member of the electoral council have called for
a 100 percent audit of the results," White House spokesman Jay
Carney told a news briefing.
"This appears an important, prudent and necessary step to
ensure that all Venezuelans have confidence in these results,"
Carney said. "In our view rushing to a decision in these
circumstances would be inconsistent with the expectations of
Venezuelans for a clear and democratic outcome."