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Sun Nov 22, 2015, 06:45 PM

First official results confirm Mauricio Macri wins historic presidential runoff in Argentina

Source: Buenos Aires Herald

Today’s historic runoff that had Daniel Scioli of the ruling Victory Front (FpV) competing against Mauricio Macri of the "Let’s Change" (Cambiemos) opposition coalition dominated by Macri's right-wing Republican Proposal (PRO) to become the successor of President Cristina Fernández de Kirchner has come to an end: according to initial exit polls, Mauricio Macri has won. Sources in the National Electoral Chamber informed that 66% of the electoral roll had already voted at 4.45 pm, with the election unfolding normally.

Results are expected to be ready starting at 7:30 in the evening, with trends likely to be consolidated by 10:30, according to statements by National Elections Director Alejandro Tullio.

Starting at 8 am, citizens began to cast their ballots in 13,000 different polling stations across the country. In the October 25 elections, Daniel Scioli and Carlos Zannini got almost a 3-point lead (37.1%) over Mauricio Macri and Gabriela Michetti (34.2%), a tighter-than-expected margin that led to today’s landmark runoff - the first in Argentine history.

Victory Front candidate Daniel Scioli, will await the final results at his bunker placed at NH Bolivar Hotel, near the Plaza de Mayo square, while Macri will show up at 8 pm in Costa Salguero.

After a year-long presidential campaign that reached fever pitch after last month’s general election, Argentines finally headed to the polls today. For the first time in history voters had only two ballots to choose from: Let’s Change (Cambiemos) candidate Mauricio Macri, or ruling Victory Front (FpV) contender Daniel Scioli; most past Argentine presidential elections have had five or six major candidates, and a number of minor ones.

Macri would take office on December 10. The center-left FpV retained an absolute majority in the Senate and a relative majority in the Lower House.

Read more: http://buenosairesherald.com/article/203520/mauricio-macri-wins-historic-presidential-runoff



Here's to Daniel Scioli, the centrist who despite his differences with Cristina Kirchner ran on the social-democratic Front for Victory ticket widely credited with revitalizing Argentina since they were first elected in 2003.

Like Al Gore, he had a good personal reputation and a fairly strong economy (2.8% growth, near-record consumer confidence) on his side. He was also supported by Pope Francis, who's asked him to "fight savage capitalism" in his campaign for the presidency.

But like Dubya, Macri had the local Catholic hierarchy (particularly the Opus Dei), the banks, big business, and, most importantly, big media on his side - not to mention a relentless and well-financed Limbaugh-style attack machine.

Much will depend on how many of his IMF policies he will be able to - or, frankly, want to - implement. These new policies would include, but are not limited to:

*quashing collective bargaining,
*curtailing benefits and public mortgage programs,
*cutting health and education,
*privatizing and outsourcing,
*and a sharp devaluation which would bring a windfall to the rich at everyone else's expense.

Already, consumer credit is being curtailed and wholesale prices reportedly soaring on the mere expectation of a devaluation.

Many are the same IMF recipes that caused the country's much-publicized collapse in 2001.

Argentina resembles the U.S. ethnically and culturally. They have a lot of the same political problems with the right the U.S. has: many white, middle-class voters will support the far right - even at their loss - because they see progressives as people who coddle "lazy blacks" (sound familiar?). That, of course, worked in Macri's favor.

But in Argentina especially, those who forget history...

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Reply First official results confirm Mauricio Macri wins historic presidential runoff in Argentina (Original post)
forest444 Nov 2015 OP
MADem Nov 2015 #1
forest444 Nov 2015 #2
MADem Nov 2015 #9
forest444 Nov 2015 #10
Matthew28 Nov 2015 #3
forest444 Nov 2015 #4
Grimelle Nov 2015 #7
forest444 Nov 2015 #8
Judi Lynn Nov 2015 #5
forest444 Nov 2015 #6
Judi Lynn Nov 2015 #11
forest444 Nov 2015 #12
brentspeak Nov 2015 #13
forest444 Nov 2015 #14
brentspeak Nov 2015 #19
forest444 Nov 2015 #20
Contralord Nov 2015 #15
forest444 Nov 2015 #18
Grins Nov 2015 #16
forest444 Nov 2015 #17
Beacool Nov 2015 #21

Response to forest444 (Original post)

Sun Nov 22, 2015, 06:53 PM

1. Well, the Pope won't be happy. He was favoring Daniel Scioli, so I've heard.

First time I've heard Macri called a "centrist." Most people would say he leans conservative.

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Response to MADem (Reply #1)

Sun Nov 22, 2015, 07:00 PM

2. Unless he reconsiders his IMF recipe, MOST Argentines will soon be unhappy.

My experience is that only business rags call Macri a "centrist." I mean, do any of the policies listed above sound like any centrist you know?

Of course, it remains to be seen how many of those policies he'll actually be able to - or, ultimately, even want to - implement. He knows what happened to the last guy who insisted on following the IMF playbook:

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Response to forest444 (Reply #2)

Sun Nov 22, 2015, 08:27 PM

9. ¡Que se vayan todos! indeed!!!! nt

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Response to MADem (Reply #9)

Sun Nov 22, 2015, 08:42 PM

10. Unless Macri shows restraint that may indeed be the Argentine news from the future, MADem.

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Response to forest444 (Original post)

Sun Nov 22, 2015, 07:04 PM

3. How does such idiocy win?

Don't the people value education and having a voice in your place of employment? Brainwashing is something to behold.

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Response to Matthew28 (Reply #3)

Sun Nov 22, 2015, 07:12 PM

4. A Breitbart-style media campaign, with a side of bigotry.

In Argentina unfortunately, the three largest media groups are right-wing and quite beholden to big landowner/big business interests.

Cristina Kirchner's vigorous social policy, moreover, was effectively used by the right to whip up a wave of resentment against people who many white, middle-class voters in Argentina (and elsewhere, as we know) openly refer to as "lazy blacks and indians."

Scioli had a good economy, near-record consumer sentiment, and good personal reputation on his side - but hatred is, as you know, a very powerful feeling.

My guess is that when tonight's winner has to cower under cries of Macrisis a year or two from know, he'll learn that it's also a blade that cuts both ways.

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Response to forest444 (Reply #4)

Sun Nov 22, 2015, 08:08 PM

7. Thank you

Your post confirms what we all know about argentina...a little brown will not go far.

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Response to Grimelle (Reply #7)

Sun Nov 22, 2015, 08:13 PM

8. You're welcome, Grimelle.

Behold the power of racism - the real white man's burden. Like in the U.S. it's certainly not true of all white voters - but it can sometimes be enough for certain politicians to win.

They may think differently in a year or two though.

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Response to forest444 (Original post)

Sun Nov 22, 2015, 07:30 PM

5. Horrible blow for the Americas. Without a doubt he had tons of support from Washington, Wall Street.

The right-wing should not get used to this. As we know the excesses of the right-wing are bad for the vast majority in every case.

So sorry to hear the bad news tonight. Glad to heard it from you. as you do have special interest in the outcome. Thank you, forest444.

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Response to Judi Lynn (Reply #5)

Sun Nov 22, 2015, 07:42 PM

6. You're very welcome, Judi Lynn.

We can only hope that President Macri will be judicious when enacting his IMF recipes - or they'll be a recipe for disaster for Argentina as well as for his own ambitions. And Macri is an ambitious man; the last thing he wants are riots under a rallying cry of ¡Fuera Macrisis!

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Response to forest444 (Reply #6)

Mon Nov 23, 2015, 12:50 AM

11. What really should upset the people is the fact Macri claims he will release Dirty War criminals

who were in prison for their war crimes against political dissenters, including savage brutality in prison, extreme, degrading, destructive torture, and murder, including chaining prisoners together, naked, and throwing them out of airplanes into the Atlantic, or into the rivers. The military officers even kept the pregnant leftist prisoners until they gave birth, took the infants, gave them to political favorites, as if they were gifts, and threw the mothers out of the airplanes immediately afterward.

For a friend to these fascists to find a way to worm his way into the Presidency is evil. His fascist friends were fully supported, financially and psychologically by the U.S. through the Secretary of State, Henry Kissinger. Tragic, and dirty beyond words.

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Response to Judi Lynn (Reply #11)

Mon Nov 23, 2015, 01:08 AM

12. If he issues any such pardons, it'll upset Scioli's voters - but probably not too many of his own.

Much like right-wing talk radio listeners here in the U.S., many Macri voters tell themselves that Dirty War criminals tried and jailed thanks to the Kirchners "got a raw deal" - and in extreme cases, some believe they should be given medals and even a monument.

Nevertheless, if Macri begins issuing pardons or in any way interferes with ongoing trials or the work of the Mothers and Grandmothers associations, the protests will be loud and without delay - you can count on that.

My suspicion is that, like with Menem, these anti-pardon protests will quickly coalesce with socioeconomic protests. And if a recession ensues (as it probably will), much of his middle class support will peel off as well. He knows all this - and more - could easily happen if he follows too much right-wing advice; it's all up to him now.

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Response to forest444 (Original post)

Mon Nov 23, 2015, 02:10 AM

13. Expect Macri to open Argentina's bank vaults to reward billionaire U.S. vulture Paul Singer

whose vulture hedge fund owns the majority of Argentina's debt (which Singer paid but pennies on the dollar for).

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Response to brentspeak (Reply #13)

Mon Nov 23, 2015, 10:58 AM

14. Macri will certainly try

One can only hope that pushback from the Argentine Congress and the Central Bank itself (which is semi-independent) may be enough to rein him in if he tries.

I should also note that Singer, who owns bonds with a market value of around $200 million (he paid $48 million, and demands a billion using a formula tailor-made for him by his paid monkey, Judge Greasa), controls less than 0.2% of Argentine bonds outstanding, which are around $130 billion. Around 40% of that are the restructured bonds whose holders are having their funds blocked by Greasa.

That's precisely what makes Greasa's rulings so egregious - and some say, illegal, due to the right of Champerty that governs all bonds ( i.e. that they cannot be bought in bad faith for the purpose of suing for more later).

Not that Macri will probably care. He hardly considers Argentina his own country, really. Too small for his ego to fit in, you see.

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Response to forest444 (Reply #14)

Mon Nov 23, 2015, 06:07 PM

19. Thanks for that info

It is indeed criminal that Singer can demand, and possibly receive, five times the amount of money his bonds are valued.

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Response to brentspeak (Reply #19)

Mon Nov 23, 2015, 06:22 PM

20. You're very welcome, brentspeak.

The fact is, though, that Singer has already cashed in on these bonds he bought in such bad faith. How? By redeeming hundreds of millions in CDS default insurance swaps he held against those very same bonds (!).

This is why he needed Judge Greasa to block all the other bondholders' money - so Argentina could be declared to be "in default" and he could thus cash in on the CDS.

So, why does he insist on badgering Argentina for a ransom payment he knows he'll probably never get? Especially when he's been offered a market-value payout which would net him a handsome 200% profit!? Because the sad truth is that Washington is vehemently opposed to foreign debt restructuring - and Argentina's was the most successful in history: a 60-70% reduction in principal accepted by 92% of affected bondholders.

In fact, those who've held on to their Argentina bonds since they were first restructured in 2005 have seen the face value of these bonds more than double, such that they've now recouped their earlier loss and then some.

But neocons don't like it, and Singer's their go-to guy whenever the need for financial sabotage struck. Or laundering services in the Caymans, of course.

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Response to forest444 (Original post)

Mon Nov 23, 2015, 11:13 AM

15. The right is losing ground

In Latin America.

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Response to Contralord (Reply #15)

Mon Nov 23, 2015, 01:46 PM

18. Welcome to DU, contralord!

And yes: for a number of years after the collapse of right-wing, profitization policies across Latin America in the late '90s and early 2000s, the right did lose a lot of ground in the region.

But they've regrouped behind an unholy trinity of neocon-sponsored financial sabotage ploys (vulture funds, the choreographed collapse of commodity prices,etc), boycotts from the local elites, and most importantly big media and their Breitbart-style attacks.

And look who else is going ga-ga over Macri:



Those two go a long way back, let me tell you.

Again, welcome!

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Response to forest444 (Original post)

Mon Nov 23, 2015, 11:44 AM

16. IMF?

Much will depend on how many of his IMF policies he will be able to - or, frankly, want to - implement.

He should tell the IMF to go pound sand. Everything they do is to help banks; not help countries or people recover. The book "Shock Doctrine" pointed them out for the world-wide hell they spawn. He should follow Iceland for guidance.

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Response to Grins (Reply #16)

Mon Nov 23, 2015, 12:32 PM

17. Yes - but Macri's drank the Kool Aid.

He's an inveterate right-winger, and had been since his days in the elite Cardinal Newman Prep School - where his more aristocratic classmates called the young Mauricio Macri (whose father is a "new money" contractor) "Lacri."

Lacra means lowlife. And he's been trying to earn their affections ever since, the poor dear.

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Response to forest444 (Original post)

Mon Nov 23, 2015, 09:29 PM

21. You're all watching this from the outside.

I go to Argentina regularly and most people couldn't wait to get rid of Kirchner. There were huge cacerolazos (pot-banging protests) in various parts of the country the last time that I was there. People took to the streets by the thousands.

I don't have much faith in Macri either, he's the son of one of the wealthiest men in Argentina.

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