Last Tuesday, Friend’s Day, President Alberto Fernández and his vice, Cristina Fernández, had dinner at Quinta de Olivos. The meeting was organized with the usual care to avoid the consequences that could generate disclosures of improper incidents.
However, although with understandable variables and content, the nucleus of what was resolved in the face-to-face was soon known among the K leadership that holds the most influence. The President and Vice had reached a principle of agreement to define how and with whom the positions would be distributed in the lists of the candidates for legislators of the Front of All for the Open, Simultaneous and Mandatory Primaries (PASO) that will be held on September 12. The general elections, the final fight, will be on November 14.
After dinner the Quinta de Olivos, and after a new conversation in which between the two protagonists in which final details of the pact were specified, several questions became certainties in the Frente de Todos.
Who would have the power to appoint the first candidates on the lists? Her or him? How would the rest of the positions be distributed to applicants? The government alliance is made up of diverse sectors with often contradictory interests.
The vice yielded in some of her claims that she considered the most effective for her tactics and proselytizing strategy and power project.
The President, for his part, also relegated ambitions. From then until midnight today four days of vertigo in which everything was defined. After the last two talks of greater importance between them, mutual communications followed one another by the dozen.
The first dinner between the Fernándezes was confirmed by four official sources of undoubted closeness to their bosses. The journalist Ignacio Ortelli had advanced in Clarion that the negotiations they had unlocked after a crucial dialogue between the President and Vice.
According to the qualified sources consulted to rebuild the electoral assembly K, the beginning of the end of the conflicts in the ruling party was cleared with a first achievement of the President.
Vice Fernández firmly insisted that he be the Chief of Staff, Santiago Cafiero, who will head the list of candidates for national deputies for the province of Buenos Aires. Fernández (Alberto), knowing in advance that intention, refused.
The previous conversations, as well as the disputes or political operations from both sides in conflict on that point, had already been unleashed in the media, and between multiple interlocutors who fulfilled the role of “ambassadors” who set the stage for the final negotiation.
The President had transmitted to the Kirchner family, through Cafiero himself, that he intended to designate nine candidates on the lists, and offered nine more positions to distribute among the leadership related to the Vice. I do not pass.
Fernández (Alberto) managed to get Fernandez (Cristina) to allow him to choose who they would be the heads of the lists in the City of Buenos Aires and in the Province.
He had let the press and the leadership transcend, with foresight, that his candidate to fight the midterm elections in Buenos Aires was the current head of the National Council for Social Policies, Victoria Tolosa Paz, couple as well as one of his best friends, the former media secretary and multi-business entrepreneur, Enrique Albistur. For the Buenos Aires list he also had a candidate: the radical, or former radical, Leandro santoro.
Before giving in to their first claims, the Kirchners offered two possibilities of agreement. One was that the advisability of a good part of the candidates being the best positioned national ministers in the polls was analyzed. It was discarded.
According to sources who participated in this story already finished but not yet completed, they assured that the head of the bloc of the ruling party deputies, Maximum Kirchner, presented another plan: his idea was to generate in the lists what he would have described as “A family photo”. That is to say, that among the candidates of the Province of Buenos, the crucial district for the PJ that integrates the ruling party to ratify its territorial leadership.
The idea of the leader of the group La Cámpora consisted of involve all the heads of the Frente de Todos in the campaign. For him, this possibility would be expressed in a list that he designed in this way: the first candidate would be Cafiero, representing the President; the second, the head of PAMI and a member of La Cámpora, Luana Volnovich; the third, the Chief of Staff of the Buenos Aires administration of Axel Kiciloff, Carlos Bianco; and the fourth place would go to the head of the state company AYSA, Malena Galmarini, whose husband is Sergio Massa.
This scheme was also rejected by the Casa Rosada.
The President reached an agreement that allows him to show himself as the one who appointed the two heads of the list in the City and Province of Buenos Aires, ratifying their share of power in that “dysfunctional family” which is the Front of All. Fernández (Cristina) gave in to that presidential request.
But he imposed names among the candidates for the City and for the Province who answer him in an absolute way, some of them uncomfortable for the Head of State. The “surprise” was the personal request that the Vice made to the current Buenos Aires senator, Agustina Propato. It was on a personal basis and to highlight his loyalty to project K. It also happens that he is the partner of the most brutal adversary that the President has within the ruling party itself: the Minister of Security, Sergio Berni, who faces very harsh criticism of the Pink House.
The pact between the President and the Vice President would include Berni not only continuing in his position but also not leaving “his convictions” aside. Translated; will not be silent. Propato is Propato and Berni is Berni.
In the same way, “Christianity” guaranteed a place with almost confirmed chances of being elected as national deputies for two “own” leaders. One is the secretary general of the CTA, Hugo Yasky.
The other is a former rival of Néstor Kirchner in the 2003 presidential elections, the then radical Leopoldo Moreau. The Vice has special affection for him. Today, he is one of the spokesmen for the most radicalized Kirchnerism.
The Vice was the one that also offered the fourth place in the lists to the only union member who entered those coveted positions, the general secretary of the banking system, Sergio Palazzo. A sign for the Moyano family.
The President had met with the social leader Maia Daer to ask her to accept a candidate for the Federal Capital. It is, in addition to a militant friendship with the Head of State, daughter of one of the general secretaries of the CGT, Héctor Daer (Health).
Governor Kiciloff would not have been personally involved in the negotiation for candidates for national legislators.
That, despite the fact that the running mate on ballot K in his district is one of his key ministers, the head of Health, Daniel Gollán. The vice elected him to debate and defend the official management of the pandemic in the media. She was chosen by her and not by Governor Kiciloff.
Everyone happy in the Front of All?
A prominent source from the National Cabinet summarized before Clarion the conclusion about the results achieved by your Boss in this story. Perhaps under stress from the closing of lists, he used a metaphor that is not found in the books of academic political scientists: “We are a family, yes. Dad (for the President) put the eggs on the table. And he got what he wanted. Mom and Dad (for Vice) live in separate houses. But it happens to preserve the marriage, not because they are divorced.
The disputes for spaces in the lists multiplied, as always, according to the districts and the different positions to be chosen.
In the event in which they presented their most important candidates, the heads of the ruling party followed a strategy of their advisers on public opinion, always based on polls: they would win votes if they show signs of unity; competing against “neoliberalism”; pointing out the need to reform the health system, promising work, and trying to establish that the pandemic was an external problem to the Government, and avoiding making references to the infinity of negative consequences that the quarantine produced. One of the councilors who highlights these guidelines and shows surveys that support the Fernándezes is the Spaniard Alfredo Serrano Mancilla.
The central plot of the problems solved in part in the Frente de Todos are summarized at the beginning of this article. The President and the Vice met to agree on their disagreements. Nothing more. Nothing less.
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