Posted: Feb 17, 2013 4:21 PM
Updated: Feb 17, 2013 4:22 PM
QUITO, Ecuador (AP) Rafael Correa is celebrating his second re-election as Ecuador's president after an exit poll showed him leading by a wide margin. Official results have still not been released.
Correa hugged jubilant supporters at the presidential palace less than an hour after polls closed Sunday.
The exit poll gave him 61 percent against 20 percent for his closest challenger, former banker Guillermo Lasso.
None of the other six candidates won more than 5 percent, according to the poll by Cedatos-Gallup. It had a 3.7 percentage point error margin.
The 48-year-old Correa was first elected in 2006, and has raised living standards for the lower classes and widened their social safety net with region-leading social spending.
But critics criticize him as a bully who is intolerant of dissent.