By Germán Negro for Channel C
In the last presidential elections, the province of Buenos Aires had an impact with 37 percent of the voter registry, some 16 million voters, but with the particularity that 11 million were concentrated in the area surrounding the Autonomous City. Known as Conurbano bonaerense, the numbers of this network of demographic and social parties will grow from the 2022 Census, which began to be processed at this time.
The disappearance of the Electoral College in the Argentine political system (since the 1994 Constitution came into effect), gives that small portion of the territory a determining position in each national election. With the economic and social crisis in full growth, constant territorial work is needed, which includes gifts and any possible type of assistance, to gain a foothold in a wide range of vulnerable sectors: what last year was outlined by a Buenos Aires minister as “Put money in your pocket”
With three speeches in five days, Governor Juan Schiaretti confirmed that he is looking at the cards to play strong in the 2023 presidential elections (as a candidate or as DT of a formula). However, any movement must overcome the refractory position to any federal attempt that the Conurbano has had. This means that the attempt must include a close candidate (for example, Eduardo Duhalde when he accompanied Carlos Menem in 1989) or a seductive “thread” that does not scare mayors and local leaders, fearful of losing in the distribution.
In his speeches, blessed by the red circle of businessmen and sector leaders, Schiaretti recalled that “every four years” you have to start over (it translates as a claim for State policies) and pointed to the heart of the perks in subsidies that he has precisely the Conurbano. Although it is a reflection of reality, to settle in that territory it must be clear that a federal distribution is possible without
hitting squarely the social fragility of neighborhoods swollen with plans, benefits and systematically degraded.
If the political armoury of the Cordovan governor, capable of carrying out a “productive and federal” program, has the consent of national Peronism (Kirchnerism aside) the road would be less uphill than if it advances along an alternative path.
For now, Schiaretti began looking for allies and leaning on political and economic action groups that are already fed up with Argentina’s decadence: for example, the Mediterranean Foundation.
The consultant Guillermo Seita -also works for Sergio Massa, among others- and Juan Manuel Urtubey from Salta are for now the men closest to Schiaretti at the national level, a team that for now does not reach the big leagues. It would not be strange for Massa, whose future is always unpredictable, to visit the governor this weekend when he arrives to accompany the Tigre team, which will play a final against Boca on Sunday in Córdoba.
The Tigrense has already turned his back on Schiaretti once, but lost confidence in part of the electorate after sticking with Cristina and Alberto Fernández, who are going through their worst moment in terms of public image.
Of course, before seeking national recognition, Schiaretti will have to revalidate his titles in Córdoba, where the provincial elections would probably be brought forward to May 2023. The governor cannot be a candidate, but a victory for the provincial PJ would be key to the last push.
Read more: The Mediterranean is already showing its sights on 2023