After 95.98% of voters were counted, the opposition led the midterm parliamentary elections in Argentina Voting is crucial for Alberto Fernandez’s centre-left government.
The center-right Alliance Together for Change, led by former President Mauricio Macri, emerged with 42.40% of the vote, according to the Clarin newspaper. Fernandez’s coalition, the Todos Front, received 33.55% of the vote.
The elections will renew half of the House of Representatives and a third of the Senate.
In the September primaries, Fernandez’s coalition lost the opposition.
The voter turnout was 71%, the lowest since the return of democracy.
If the result is confirmed, the Fernandez administration is likely to lose its majority in the Senate in December. This will be the first time since 1983 that Peronism will need allies to ensure approval of laws sent by the executive branch, according to Clarin.
In Argentina, the Vice President is also the President of the Senate. Therefore, the position is occupied by Christina Kirchner. Today, it has managed to control, as the majority of senators are from the ruling coalition.
Cristina Kirchner and Alberto Fernandez on November 11, 2021 – Photo: Matias Baglito / Reuters
Fernandez has sought to secure governance for the next two years of his term, while all candidates are already considering the 2023 presidential race.
Before the results were announced, Macri said that “the next two years will be difficult” and, on a winning tone, emphasized that his coalition “will act very responsibly, helping to make the transition as orderly as possible”.
A virtual session of the Argentine Senate on May 13 – Photo: Agustin Marcarian / Arquivo / Reuters
In recent weeks, the government has announced economic measures and price controls, in an effort to combat soaring inflation that accumulated 41.8% between January and October, one of the highest in the world.
Fernandez also emphasized his talk about the International Monetary Fund (IMF), with which Argentina is trying to reach an agreement to replace the $44 billion reserve credit for 2018.
“We also have to settle the debts they left us with the IMF, and of course we have to solve it. But I will not solve it in five minutes because whoever solves this problem in five minutes is because he agreed with the Fund in everything he asks for,” he said. Fernandez at the end of the campaign.
If it does not get the new agreement, Argentina – whose population lives in poverty – will have to pay $19 billion to the International Monetary Fund in 2022 and the same amount in 2023.
When the elections take place The country is emerging from the last recession that started in 2018 and deepened with a 9.9% drop in GDP in 2020 due to the Covid-19 pandemic..
The decline in the number of Covid-19 infections in recent weeks and progress in the vaccination program – with more than 60% of the population on a full vaccination schedule and another 20% with the first dose – are allowing activities to resume and recovery.
But forecasts of GDP growth of about 9% for this year only bring the situation back to the beginning of the Fernandez government, when Argentina accumulated two years of stagnation.
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