Argentina: former president Mauricio Macri gives up presidential bid

Vice President Cristina Kirchner has yet to confirm or deny her candidacy.

"In difficult situations we immediately look for a messianic personality to give us security," said former Argentinian President Mauricio Macri a video announcing that he will not run in the October presidential elections. Neither he, nor anyone else, he assured, is that "messiah."

Macri, who occupied the Casa Rosada from 2015 to 2019, took the opportunity to criticize President Alberto Fernández. "We will never again have a puppet as president," he promised, alluding to the fact that the current president was chosen by Vice-President Cristina Fernández de Kirchner to occupy that position. This phrase, moreover, could insinuate that Macri will not run as vice-president, because if he were to do so, he would be repeating the formula of the Fernández-Kirchner ballot: a vice-president who holds more power than the president.

Argentina is adrift. No leadership, isolated from the world. The anguish produced by this situation is located in the middle of our chests, where millions of Argentines feel the fear of being left without work, the fear of needing help for health care and not getting it, of not having enough money for retirement. To be robbed, to have our children leave the country.

The opposition leader explained that he has stepped aside to make room for the variety of "competitive and different leaders we have today" and to "enlarge the political space."

Presidential candidates

The general elections will be held Oct. 22 and, in case a runoff election is necessary, the second round will be held on Nov. 19. However, the pre-candidates must be defined by June, since the primaries will be voted on Aug. 13.

At the moment, there are about twenty confirmed candidates, including the current president. Cristina Kirchner has not yet confirmed her candidacy, although rumors began to circulate this month that she will likely run.

Another of the unknowns for the upcoming elections is the role that the liberal Javier Milei may play. According to the latest polls, his Libertad Avanza party could break the Kirchnerist vs. anti-Kirchnerist polarization that has defined Argentinian politics for the last 20 years.