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Fragmentation, the trap/opportunity that awaits Javier Milei

2023-12-07T23:27:03.210Z

Highlights: The new president will be the weakest in recent history, but the power he will face will be divided into a multicolored mosaic. Javier Milei is either a cause or a consequence of the end of the polarization that ordered politics in the last decade. Milei cannot consider the 55% of votes he got in the second round his own, because that is an artificial majority generated by an electoral system that generates overwhelming support where there is none. If the new president's operatives work well, they will have several gaps of disgruntled legislators where they can fish for votes.


The new president will be the weakest in recent history, but the power he will face will be divided into a multicolored mosaic.


The word fragmentation is the one that best describes the political situation that Javier Milei will find when he assumes the presidency of the Nation on Sunday. It will be fragmentation in several ways.

The first partition is that of origin: Milei is either a cause or a consequence – it doesn't matter so much to investigate that sequence now – of the end of the polarization that ordered politics in the last decade. The libertarian is the president who understood that it was in his best interest to dodge the rift in order to win the election.

To understand this scenario, we must avoid falling into the mirages generated by the ballots. Milei cannot consider the 55% of votes he got in the second round his own, because that is an artificial majority generated by an electoral system that generates overwhelming support where there is none. What Milei does have is the 30% he got in the first round, a percentage that is very similar to the one he obtained in the PASO. The original fragmentation, then, is this: a political system that goes from having two main actors to three.

This change in the electoral scenario had an obvious consequence. Congress will also be much more fragmented. Milei will be the weakest president in the history of democracy - he needs to add 90 deputies and about thirty senators to be able to start the treatment of any law - but his rivals will not have consolidated situations. To put it another way. If the new president's operatives work well, they will have several gaps of disgruntled legislators where they can fish for votes.

In the judiciary, Milei will face a very different landscape than his predecessors encountered. Since he has no political history, he never appointed a judge. In their almost twenty years in power, Néstor and Cristina Kirchner changed half of the federal and national judges, and when they arrived they found hundreds of magistrates appointed by their own party. Mauricio Macri also appointed dozens of judges, and upon his arrival there were already in all the jurisdictions appointed by his radical partners in previous administrations or in negotiations with Peronism. In that sense, Milei's pen is stripped of history.

Another of the partitions is happening at this time in the Council of the Magistracy. The entry of Senator Luis Juez – added to the rest of the changes resulting from the government transition – will change the landscape of that body in charge of selecting and removing judges. For the first time, the non-Kirchnerist bloc will reach two-thirds of the members and that expanded majority will allow the impeachments and contests to advance, which have been blocked for years as a result of the rift between Kirchnerism and Together for Change.

The new president has already shown signs that he will try to walk over this political puzzle by stopping at an even more elusive group: the people. It is a temptation that always assails new presidents. They all want to transform the legitimacy they get at the ballot box into tools that allow them to govern. But that passage is not instantaneous. The Constitution foresees a long road, of successive elections and difficult accumulations, to offer that miracle.

Source: clarin

All news articles on 2023-12-07

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