Far Right Outsider Wins Argentina Presidential
Far-right libertarian outsider Javier Milei has won Argentina Presidential run-off poll, according to provisional results.
Mr. Milei’s rival, Economy Minister Sergio Massa, called him to concede.
Former United State (US) President Donald Trump congratulated Mr. Milei on his victory, saying he would make Argentina great again.
The election comes at a difficult time for Argentina with rising inflation and an economy in crisis.
Mr. Milei’s proposals, which included “blowing up” the central bank, won support with voters desperate for change.
He confounded pollsters by easily defeating the candidate of the Governing Peronists by more than 10 points, provisional results suggest.
With almost 90% of votes counted, Mr. Milei had nearly 56% of the vote compared with 44% for Mr. Massa.
However, economists have been more circumspect, pointing out that Mr Milei’s party only holds a small number of seats in Argentina’s Congress and that he will therefore have to negotiate with the very politicians he disparaged and attacked during the campaign.
Despite his anti-establishment rhetoric, Mr Milei has in the past been quick to bury the hatchet if it suits him politically.
Following his win in the first round, he stopped attacking the third-placed candidate, conservative Patricia Bullrich, who in turn threw her weight behind Mr Milei in the second round.
In his victory speech, he thanked both Ms Bullrich and the conservative former president, Mauricio Macri, who had also endorsed him.
But while his supporters took to the streets of the capital, Buenos Aires, chanting “change!”, there are also those who worry about what Mr Milei’s victory may mean for Argentine society.
His choice of Victoria Villarruel as his vice-presidential running mate shocked human rights campaigners in the country, in which 30,000 people were killed or forcibly disappeared under military rule from 1976 to 1983.
Ms Villarruel, who comes from a military family, has defended officers convicted of crimes against humanity and proposed dismantling a museum which commemorates victims of Argentina’s military junta.
Mr Milei and Ms Villarruel will be sworn in on 10 December for a four-year term.