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Mon May 13, 2019, 03:14 AM

Eighth straight loss for Macri's 'Let's Change' renews calls to break with unpopular president [View all]

Elections in Córdoba Province - Argentina's second-largest - gave incumbent Governor Juan Schiaretti a resounding victory, and President Mauricio Macri's right-wing "Let's Change" coalition its eighth straight defeat so far this year.

With 91% of the vote in, Schiaretti won reelection today with 57%, with Macri's candidate, Mario Negri, with 19%, and Ramón Mestre of the centrist UCR (junior partners in 'Let's Change') at just 12%.

While Schiaretti, a centrist within the Justicialist Party (founded by the late populist leader Juan Perón), was widely expected to win today, his lopsided victory was a political sting for Macri, whose surrogates had campaigned extensively for Negri.

Negri, moreover, was unable to run on a united 'Let's Change' ticket because on March 11, the Córdoba UCR broke with the coalition over disaffection with Macri and his handling of the deepest economic crisis since the 2001 collapse.

The UCR fielded Mestre separately instead, and in turn lost control of the city of Córdoba (Argentina's second largest), which elected a Justicialist mayor - Martín Llaryora, who won by 19% - for the first time since 1973.

Tonight's defeat in Córdoba marks the eighth straight defeat in provincial polls for Macri since a February 17 'Let's Change' primary in La Pampa Province yielded an unexpected rebuke for the president's hand-picked candidate, Carlos MacAllister of Macri's hard-right PRO, by UCR Congressman Daniel Kroneberger - and by a lopsided 32%.

The defeat in La Pampa was followed by seven more so far:

∙ Neuquén Province on March 10, where 'Let's Change' lost by 25%
∙ San Juan Province on March 31, by 22%
∙ Chubut Province on April 7, by 18%
∙ Río Negro Province, the same day, by 47%
∙ Entre Ríos Province on April 14, by 21%
∙ Santa Fe Province (the nation's third-largest) on April 28, by 14%
∙ And today's defeat in Córdoba, by 26% (by 38%, taking Negri alone).

Radical departure

This trend, plus Argentina's deepening economic crisis and Macri's 24% approval ratings, have renewed calls by many in the UCR (known in Argentina as "Radicals" despite their moderate politics) to break with Macri entirely when the party meets for their convention on May 27.

Ricardo Alfonsín, who as the son of former President Raúl Alfonsín (elected in 1983 after a ruinous, 7-year dictatorship) wields considerable influence in the UCR, is among those who supports endorsing economist Roberto Lavagna instead - as the UCR already once did in 2007.

"The UCR must form a new front that recovers the confidence and expectations of the people, and that includes socialists, GEN (a small centrist party), and sectors within Peronism," Alfonsín advised.

"If the electoral choices in 2019 are the same as those in 2015, the winner this time will be United Citizens" - in reference to the center-left party founded by former President Cristina Fernández de Kirchner, whom recent polls show winning against any potential rival despite not yet announcing her candidacy.

The sentiment was echoed in February by UCR Vice President Federico Storani, a Córdoba Province native.

"We're useful in (Macri's) search for power but can't discuss social policies. When they're in a pickle, they call you for a photo-op and then disappear."

At: https://translate.google.com/translate?hl=en&tab=wT&sl=auto&tl=en&u=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.pagina12.com.ar%2F193472-elecciones-en-cordoba-arraso-el-peronismo

Re-elected Córdoba Province Governor Juan Schiaretti (left) and Martín Llaryora, candidate for mayor of the city of Córdoba (Argentina's second-largest), celebrate their victories tonight.

Their Justicialist Party easily defeated candidates endorsed by President Mauricio Macri, whose right-wing administration - despite staunch support by most corporate media in Argentina - may be denied a second term this October by the sharpest recession since the country's 2001-02 collapse.

The trend - and the crisis itself - has renewed calls among the ruling coalition's junior (and largely ignored) partners, the UCR, to break with Macri altogether.

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Reply Eighth straight loss for Macri's 'Let's Change' renews calls to break with unpopular president [View all]
sandensea May 2019 OP
Judi Lynn May 2019 #1
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