After years of Venezuelans smuggling cheap gas into Colombia for generous profits, Venezuela closes the whole border each night.
And yet just a few hours later, Venezuela's Election Agency showed Chavez winning massively, by nearly 10 percentage points.
Even a moderate fall in the price could put Venezuela into a whole lot of hurt.
Republic in northern South America, bordered by the Caribbean Sea to the north, Guyana to the east, Brazil to the south, and Colombia to the southwest and west. Its capital and largest city is Caracas.
Note: Venezuela is rich in oil, which accounts for about ninety percent of its export income. Because of its revenue from oil, Venezuela has the highest per capita national income in Latin America. It was a founder of the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC).
Note: Venezuela became independent from Spain in 1821.