Argentina is facing elections and it looks like they have a powerful message for the pro-business Mauricio Macri government: it hasn’t worked.
In 2015, Argentines chose a radically different direction for their country by electing the pro-business Mauricio Macri as president, rejecting more than a decade of left-wing Peronist populism in favor of an experiment with economic reforms to open the economy.
This Sunday they headed back to the polls for the first round of the next presidential election, and it looks like they’ll render a stark verdict for the Macri government: it hasn’t worked, according to G ZERO Media. The “dream” that Macri promised has become a nightmare, because his economic reforms inflicted enough pain to provoke popular backlash, but without reassuring investors that the government was committed to long-term change. The Peronist party, led by Alberto Fernandez with former president Cristina Fernandez de Kirchner as his running mate, is the clear favorite to win, perhaps without a second-round runoff. We’re watching to see how Argentines understand their past and how they want to move toward the future.
The October 27 election is coming down to two presidential tickets, and Alberto Fernández is polling ahead of President Mauricio Macri. To win, a candidate needs to get either 45% of the vote or 40% with 10 points over the runner-up to win outright. Otherwise, the top two candidates meet in a runoff on November 24. Presidents may run for consecutive reelection once, then must sit out one four-year term before qualifying to run again.
Four other presidential tickets remain in the race and likely only matter to the extent that either Macri or Fernández could pick up their votes in the case of a runoff. And while Argentines’ top concern is the economy, particularly inflation, prices, salaries, and unemployment, they are also fretting about corruption and public spending, and those topics can have a final say ahead of the Sunday elections.
Head to AS COA for more coverage on the Argentina presidential elections.