Argentina held the legislative elections this Sunday (14), in a day that passed without incident. The polls were opened at 8:00 am local time (same time as Brasília) and closed at 6:00 pm. So far, more than 90% of the votes have been counted.
The preliminary results would represent a defeat for the governing coalition, the Frente de Todos. While the ruling party improved its numbers from the primary elections held in September, opposition prevailed nationwide, according to Sunday’s polling data.
Furthermore, a fact already projected in the primary elections was confirmed: for the first time since the return of democracy in 1983, Peronism loses its majority in the Senate.
After learning about the first results, the president of Argentina, Alberto Fernández, spoke in a message addressed to the country’s population. “Today begins the second part of our government,” he said, arguing that Argentines have “a right to hope.”
“Argentina, despite these difficulties, has advanced and will continue to advance. We are getting up,” said Fernández. However, he said it is necessary that “the relationship between the Government and the National Congress, in the Chamber of Deputies and in the Senate, is fruitful, for the general interest of our country.”
On the other hand, he referred to debt as the “biggest obstacle”, stating that “it is also time to solve the problem arising from the debt contracted by the government that preceded me with the International Monetary Fund”.
On this point, he announced that in the first week of December they will send Congress “a bill specifying the ‘Multiannual economic program for sustainable development’”.
“This program will contemplate the best understandings that our government has reached with the IMF staff in the negotiations conducted by our Minister of Economy, Martín Guzmán, without renouncing the principles of economic growth and social inclusion,” said the president.
Finally, he concluded: “I do not, in any way, share the position of those who say that we have no destiny.’ Anyone who is not responsible for the damage he caused cannot teach us lessons”.
Shortly after the polls closed, Vice President Cristina Kirchner announced that she would not be present in the Frente para Todos directory at the close of the day.
“I was told to rest. Nothing to worry about, but the effort to participate in the event delayed the postoperative evolution. Therefore, tonight I will not be able to be, as I would like and as I have always done, in the place. A hug to all of you”, he posted on his Twitter.
Redefining the political map
In these elections, Argentines chose candidates to renew 127 of the 257 seats in the Chamber of Deputies and 24 of the 54 seats in the Chamber of Senators.
Previously, on September 12, the Simultaneous and Mandatory Open Primaries (PASO) were held, the first stage of the election, in which each party presented different candidates for the positions.
In this case, citizens defined with their vote which of all these candidates should be the candidate elected for the general elections, which is the second stage of the process.
Eight provinces elected 24 senators in these elections. Two for the majority and one for the first minority in each district. Frente de Todos put into play 15 of the 41 seats it had, and Juntos por el Cambio, 9 of the 25 it had.
On the other hand, the Chamber of Deputies renews with these elections 127 of its 257 seats. Unlike senators, who represent the provinces, deputies represent the Argentine people. They serve four-year terms and are elected through a system of proportional representation in the 24 districts into which the country is divided.
(Translated text. Click here to read the original in Spanish)
Reference: CNN Brasil