Chile’s far right may have received a bloody nose in a deeply divisive presidential race in 2021, but elections Sunday for a body that will rewrite the country’s dictatorship-era constitution have shown it to be an enduring force. Led by conservative lawyer Jose Antonio Kast, an apologist for deceased military dictator Augusto Pinochet, Chile’s Republican Party took 23 of 51 seats on the council that will design a new framework for the country’s future. The outcome of Sunday’s vote does not alter the balance of power in the Chilean parliament, where the far right is a minority. But it does give the Republican Party Kast founded in 2019 overwhelming sway in drafting the document that will shape Chile’s new identity. “The most likely is that something very similar to the 1980 (constitution) will come” from the drafting process, said Claudia Heiss of the University of Chile. This would, in effect, maintain the status quo in the South American country which had appeared to be on a leftward trajectory ever since anti-government protests broke out in 2019 against deep social inequality. The protests led to a referendum in 2020 in which 80 percent voted for replacing the Pinochet-era constitution. In May 2021, Chileans elected a majority left-leaning body to write a new constitution, and that December chose millennial leftist Gabriel Boric as president over Kast. Then the tide seemed to turn: Last year, more than 61 percent of voters rejected the constitutional draft that would have made Chile one of the most progressive countries in Latin America. It would have allowed for elective abortion and expanded Indigenous rights — all elements of Boric’s leftist reform agenda. And on Sunday, voters opted for a majority of Republican Party members on the drafting body.