Interior Minister Eduardo 'Wado' de Pedro has confirmed that Frente de Todos will decide its presidential candidate in the PASO primaries, with Alberto Fernández likely seeking re-election and an “alternative” candidate competing against him for the ruling coalition’s nomination.
De Pedro, a leader of the La Cámpora political youth organisation and one of the Cabinet officials seen as closest to Vice-President Cristina Fernández de Kirchner, said in an interview with the C5N television news channel that it would be “very good” for the president to stand against “an alternative” and to let “the people define who is the best” candidate.
Yet the 46-year-old – who has been tipped as a potential candidate representing the Kirchnerite wing of Frente de Todos – hinted that not all sectors of the ruling coalition agreed with the strategy, saying it was a result of a unilateral decision taken solely by President Fernández.
"The president defined a strategy some time ago,” said the official. “They asked him to discuss part of it, but there was no space to discuss it, so what we have today is a product of the unipersonal decision of the president of the nation.”
Peronist leaders are still fine-tuning their electoral strategy ahead of the PASO primaries and October general election. Fernández has not confirmed that he will seek re-election, though most analysts expect him to do so.
Quizzed about the ruling coalition’s potential line-up for the PASOs, de Pedro said that the head of state would move forward with his bid for a second term unilaterally, despite the fact that “many sectors of Frente de Todos asked him to discuss part of the strategy."
"Today we have to go to a PASO, in which the president will run, that is what I understand. It would be very good for the president to run, [and] for the rest of Frente de Todos to be able to put together an alternative and for the people to be able to define [the candidate] in the PASO,” said de Pedro.
Quizzed about his own potential candidacy, the official responded: "I am part of a generation that wants to see a serious generational change in Argentina in many areas."
Clarity over candidacies is expected sometime in mid-April, around the same time as a key meeting of the Justicialist Party (PJ) Council.