Tuesday, October 22, 2019
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ARGENTINA | 12-08-2019 16:34

'We need more time to reflect,' says Vidal after PASO loss to Kicillof

Buenos Aires Province Governor María Eugenia Vidal admits her government has to 'listen' to voters in the province in run-up to October's decisive vote, after steep loss to Kirchnerite hopeful Axel Kicillof.

Buenos Aires Province Governor María Eugenia Vidal admitted this afternoon that the prospects of Juntos por el Cambio winning October’s general election are now “much lower” after Sunday’s disappointing PASO vote. 

Addressing the press in the capital after a meeting of top government officials, the governor stated the government was “concerned” about the ongoing depreciation of the peso against the dollar, which slumped around 23 percent in value. 

“Yesterday’s election is telling us that we have to listen more. Bettering what there is to better and correcting what there is to correct,” Vidal said at a press conference, as she sought to convince bonaerenses they should back her in October.

Vidal lost the primary race to former economic minister Axel Kicillof by a near 17-percent margin, leaving her with a mountain to climb if she is to win re-election. In the densely populated Conurbano surrounding the City, the Frente de Todos coalition beat the government’s Juntos por el Cambio grouping by a 40-point difference. 

“It would not be a very serious self-criticism if I said something today,” Vidal said, when pressed by reporters on the reason for the loss. “We need more time to reflect.” 

'Responsibility'

Addressing the press this morning, Kicillof called on the government to “act with responsibility” amid the country’s snowballing economic crisis. 

"Today we present ourselves to society, not to the markets. The government from here to December has the responsibility, we hope it gives answers," conclude the former economy minister.

Kicillof, a close ally of former president Cristina Fernández de Kirchner, looks odds-on to win the governorship in the nation's most-populous province in October, after the gubernatorial hopeful performed strongly in Peronist heartlands. Frente de Todos triumphed over Juntos por el Cambio in districts historically governed by Peronist leaders in the Conurbano, such as La Matanza, Lomas de Zamaro, Ezeiza, Esteban Echeverría and Berazategui. 

Thanks to their showing, Kirchnerite candidates are now well positioned to secure victory the general elections on October 27. 

In Ezeiza, current mayor Alejandro Granados obtained 59.20 percent of the vote compared to 19.71 for his Juntos por el Cambio opponent Rubén Barabani. 

Another strong defeat for Mauricio Macri was in La Matanza, where the former mayor Fernando Espinoza won by 40 points over his opponent, Education Minister Alejandro Finocchiaro. 

In Lomas de Zamaro, Martín Insaurralde will return to be the mayoral candidate for Frente de Todos, winning 55.74 percent of the vote over government candidate Gabriel Mercuri’s 24.16 percent. 

In Tigre, Frente de Todos candidate Julio Zamaro achieved 51.83 percent of the vote over actor and alderman Segundo Cernadas’ 28.90 percent. 

– NA / PERFIL / TIMES

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