OAN’s James Meyers
8:35 AM – Monday, November 20, 2023
Argentina elected libertarian outsider Javier Milei, dubbed the “Trump of Argentina” as the country’s new president.
The announcement came on Sunday, as Argentina takes a chance on Milei to fix an economy dealing with 140% inflation, a recession on the rise and poverty continually increasing.
Milei received 55.7% of the votes versus 44.3% for center-left candidate Sergio Massa. Massa won the vote-rich province of Buenos Aires by just over 1%, Milei won the city proper of Buenos Aires, and then overwhelmingly won in the northern provinces of Cordoba, Santa Fe, and Mendoza.
In the final week before the election, Milei showed a small lead in the polls, but political experts believed he underperformed in the first round election last month. Milei only received 30% of the vote in the first round, to Massa’s nearly 37%. Meanwhile, former center-right Security Minister Patricia Bullrich placed third with 24% of the vote.
Milei during his campaign run has pledged economic shock therapy.
He has said he will shut down the central bank, get rid of the peso, and cut spending drastically.
Milei has a tough road ahead as the new president, with the country’s $44 billion debt program with the International Monetary Fund, eye-popping inflation and capital controls.
Meanwhile, current President Alberto Fernandez has not been seen in several months, and it has been suspected by political analysts that Massa has been making the important economic decisions over the course of 2023.
Milei has been favorable among the young voters of Argentina. His victory could impact trade in lithium, grains and hydrocarbons. Milei has been very outspoken against Brazil and China, claiming he will not deal with “communists,” and wants stronger ties with the United States.
“The election marks a profound rupture in the system of political representation in Argentina,” said Julio Burdman, director of the consultancy Observatorio Electoral, ahead of the vote.
The newly elected President is also known for being against abortion, pro guns and has called Argentine Pope Francis a socialist “son of a bitch.”
Additionally, he has pledged that Argentina’s two key allies will be the United States and Israel.
With no single bloc having a majority in the country’s Congress, Milei will have to get backing from other factions to push through legislation, which will be a battle for Milei throughout his tenure as the new President of Argentina.
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