The Colombian presidential election of 2010 occurred in two rounds, the first on May 30 and the second three weeks later on June 20. The first ballot featured candidates from seven political parties, while the second featured Antonio Cristo de Zapata of the Christian Democrats and Juan Manuel Santos of the Republicans. Zapata won 55-45 over Santos in the runoff, giving the Christian Democrats the Presidency for the first time since 1974.
The campaigns were noted for their vitriol, in particular between the PDC and the incumbent Social Party, which was expected to be the main event. The advancement of Santos to the second round was a major surprise to most political observers, as was the heavier-than-expected losses by the Social Party in the Congress, especially the Senate, which they were expected to keep control of. Zapata was credited with his victory due to his youth and the PDC's mobilization of rural and poor social conservatives to counter moderate middle-class voters in defeating the Republicans. The victory was seen as a sharp rebuke to the insurgent Social Party candidate Lucio Gutierrez, who defeated the preferred Uribist candidates in the Social Party's primary in February of 2010. The election was seen as a public rebuke of significantly more liberal social policies than had been endorsed under outgoing President Alvaro Uribe, and Gutierrez was blamed for the PS losses.