Argentina’s Open, Simultaneous and Compulsory Primary Elections (PASO) just around the corner and earlier this week, the National Electoral Chamber (CNE) released images of the ballots for all 27 of the presidential hopefuls competing on August 13.
Of the 27 ballots, 23 bear the photo of the two candidates (presidential hopeful and running-mate), so that voters can identify them more easily. Three feature only the presidential candidate and one alliance chose to include only the names of the candidates running.
For the 2023 PASO primaries a total of 35,394,425 people are eligible to vote in Argentina at one of the 104,577 polling stations distributed across the country.
The primary elections serve as a de facto national poll prior to the nation’s presidential election, which will take place on October 22, with a possible second round run-off on November 19.
Voting in the primaries is compulsory though no-shows are not often punished. The PASOs will also determine the legislative candidates for Congress, which will be partially renewed.
Race for the Casa Rosada: the candidates
Unión por la Patria
The rebranded ruling coalition will hold a competitive primary, though the extent of that competition is up for debate. The lead ticket is formed by Economy Minister Sergio Massa and veteran politician Agustín Rossi, currently serving as Cabinet chief. Challenging that line-up is social leader, activist and lawyer Juan Grabois, seconded by CONICET researcher, sociologist Paula Abal Medina. She is the daughter of Juan Manuel Abal Medina, a figure closely linked to Juan Domingo Perón.
Juntos por el Cambio
In the heavyweight clash of the round, the opposition coalition will finally settle the leadership debate between Horacio Rodríguez Larreta and Patricia Bullrich. The Buenos Aires City mayor, who shares a ticket with influential Radical and Jujuy Province Governor Gerardo Morales, is pitching dialogue and historic change. His rival, a former security minister under ex-president Mauricio Macri, has chosen the lesser-known Mendoza national deputy and former gubernatorial candidate Luis Petri as her running-mate.
Libertarians are coming
With hopes that he can progress to an eventual run-off in proper voting in October, outspoken economist and libertarian lawmaker Javier Milei is running on a ticket with Victoria Villarruel, a fellow lawmaker and lawyer from a military family, representing La Libertad Avanza.
Milei is not the only fierce liberal running in the elections. The Liber.AR Front will offer three alternatives in its internal primary: Nazareno Etchepare, Julio Donato Bárbaro and Ramiro Eduardo Vasena.
Hacemos por Nuestro País
Promoting dialogue as a way to overcome Argentina’s famous ‘grieta,’ a reference to stark political polarisation, the ‘third way’ ticket of Hacemos por Nuestro País will be headed by outgoing Córdoba Province governor Juan Schiaretti and national deputy Florencio Randazzo.
The alleged “unity” in the Frente de Izquierda y de los Trabajadores-Unidad coalition is somewhat fractured by the alliance’s decision to go to the PASOs with two proposals. On the one hand, the Myriam Bregman-Nicolás Del Caño ticket offers experience and recognition against the underdog slate of Gabriel Solano and Vilma Ripoll.
The Left will have other electoral options in these PASO, such as MAS (Movimiento al Socialismo), represented by Manuela Castañeira and Lucas Ruiz, and Política Obrera, with Marcelo Ramal-Patricia Urones on the ticket.
Libres del Sur, a party of the progressive left-wing, will go to the primaries with a ticket of Jesús Escobar and Marianella Lezama Hid.
Unión del Centro Democrático (Ucedé) will again compete for the Casa Rosada with presidential hopeful Andrés Gabriel Passamonti and his running-mate, Pamela Fernández Margaride.
Another returning party is the Frente Patriota Federal, although it will not be led by Alejandro Biondini, but by his son, César Biondini, who will compete for the Presidency supported by María Eugenia Avendaño.
The Movimiento de Acción Vecinal (Neighbourhood Action Movement) is another of the smaller parties – they are putting up a ticket of Raúl Humberto Albarracín and Sergio Darío Pastore.
The Movimiento Izquierda Juventud Dignidad (MIJD) will run with two presidential hopefuls: Santiago Cúneo and Raúl Castells.
In addition to these challengers, Proyecto Joven will also be looking to reach the 1.5 percent threshold it needs to put up a slate in the general elections. The alliance is offering three hopefuls for the Presidency: Mempo Giardinelli, Reina Xiomara Ibáñez and Martín Miguel Ayerbe Ortiz.
Finally, Principios y Valores is putting up five options: Guillermo Moreno, Eliodoro Martínez, Jorge Eduardo Oliver, Carina Paola Bartolini, and Paula Lorena Arias.