BUENOS AIRES (AP) – Amid shouts, threats of legal action, references to the debt with the IMF and the effectiveness of vaccines against COVID-19, the first debate took place between the main candidates for the legislative elections in Argentina.
The most virulent crosses on Wednesday night in the study of the Todo Noticias chain were carried out by the liberal economist Javier Milei, nominated by the Libertad Avanza party, and Myriam Bregman of the Left Front.
“Milei is very used to women not talking,” the leftist candidate launched in the November 14 elections. “There is no use arguing with this man, he is violent.”
“Be careful with what you say, I’m going to report you,” replied Milei, an economist who launched himself into politics this year with the promise of “ending the political caste” and who admitted having “things in common with (Donald) Trump and (Jair) Bolsonaro ”, referring to the former US president and the president of Brazil.
Without giving in to his position, Bregman raised his tone and affirmed that Milei “started by being polite, but in the acts he tells us ‘left-handed people of (foul term) are going to run’ … the same as they told us in the dictatorship. With a man who yells at me, I don’t argue ”.
The crossing forced the moderators to intervene to calm things down, but the discussion rose again when Milei admitted that she had not been inoculated against COVID-19 because “not all vaccines are well tested.” He added that he is not a risk patient and that it is enough to wear a mask.
“You put us at risk,” Bregman accused him.
In the mid-term elections, 127 seats of deputies and 24 of the Senate are renewed. It is a key choice for the Peronist government of President Alberto Fernández, who in the event of a defeat of his force will be forced to negotiate with the opposition in the last two years in office.
The discussion between the candidate from the left and the one from the right at times overshadowed the other two participants in the debate, Leandro Santoro from the ruling Frente de Todos, and María Eugenia Vidal, from the opposition Juntos por el Cambio and a favorite in the polls.
“Today we are worse than in December 2019,” said Vidal regarding the last year of government of the conservative Mauricio Macri (2015-2019), leader of his space. “There is a way out. It is not easy, it is not fast, but it is possible ”.
The former governor of the province of Buenos Aires and now a candidate for deputy for the capital said that the government “improvised during the pandemic,” and also questioned the delay in reaching an agreement with the International Monetary Fund to renegotiate the loan for 45,000 million. dollars that the agency granted to the country in 2018. “There is no plan, there is no direction,” he complained.
In this regard, Santoro referred to “the shameful and mean process of taking on debt” in the previous government and that “you escaped a (loan) from the IMF”, alluding to the fact that a large part of the funds were used to keep the government under control. price of the dollar in the exchange market before the transfer of government in 2019.
Few proposals were outlined in the debate if they reached Congress.
Vidal promised that if he wins the elections “we will not vote for new taxes or increases in existing ones.” For his part, Bregman will promote the reduction of the working day from eight to six hours and the legalization of marijuana, Milei said that he will advocate ending “the privileges of the political caste”, and Santoro announced that he will work so that “Argentina It is once again that great country with a thriving middle class that made upward social mobility and social security its greatest pride ”.