President Macri’s bid for consensus talks gets lukewarm response
n the course of last week the
government broadened its
appeal for dialogue over its
10 points of governability to not
only the entire political spectrum, including Kirchnerismo,
but also the Church and the
CGT umbrella union grouping.
But President Mauricio
Macri’s newfound interest in
consensus met with a frigid response from most opposition
leaders, who described it as a
bid to show stability amid economic crisis and slumping opinion polls with presidential
dark horse Roberto Lavagna
dismissing the intiative as “political speculation.”
The main opposition leaders
accepting the invitation were
two moderate Peronists, Salta
Governor Juan Manuel Urtubey and Senate Federal Alternative caucus leader Miguel
Renewal Front leader Sergio
Massa said that the 10 points
failed to include either employment or education, implying
that the government not only
needed to increase its guest list
to roundtable discussion but
also expand the agenda beyond
points aimed at reassuring the
markets (which include balancing the budget, boosting exports, cutting taxes and honouring the country’s debts).
Meetings with provincial governors are still very much up
in the air although Córdoba’s
Juan Schiaretti (a likely winner
tomorrow against Macri’s locally fragmented Cambiemos
coalition) is reportedly high on
the list of priorities.
While Macri last week pledged his personal involvement to
keep the initiative rolling, organisation of the roundtable is
basically being managed by
Interior Minister Rogelio Frigerio, Cabinet Chief Marcos Peña
and Buenos Aires City Mayor
Horacio Rodríguez Larreta.
Lavagna (who has yet to officially confirm his presidential
run) this week watered down
his rejection by saying: “The
quest for consensus is absolutely crucial and it must be genuine, without searching for
media or electoral gain.”
Yet both Frigerio and Peña
are still hoping to talk to Lavagna, according to La Nación.
Senator Cristina Fernández
de Kirchner does
not rule out attending a meeting or so her former intelligence chief Oscar
Parilli told Perfil.
According to Daniel Kerner,
a Latin American specialist
with Eurasia, the main aim behind the move is less to reassure investors than “to weaken
opposition candidates,” especially Fernández de Kirchner
on the expectation that she
would not join the talks.