Wednesday, November 25, 2015

Argentina Bids Farewell To The Kirchnerista Movement And Welcomes Change In Macri

Cristina Kirchner
The Kirchnerista/Peronista came to an end when Argentinians voted for Mauricio Macri who represents the The Republican Proposal/Cambiemos (Let's Change) Movement on November 22nd, 2015. 
Mauricio Macri
Back in October, there was a vote that was meant to narrow down the presidential candidates to just two. As I reported in a previous post, the voting system is fairly simple. 

It involves a sheet of paper with the face and name of the candidate along with the names of all the elected officials that they represent. In other words, one vote counts for all offices in that party. The ballot was then sealed in an envelope and placed in a box by the edge of the table where voters must first sign in before going into a private room to vote.

It came down to Daniel Scioli who represents the same party as the current Argentine president, Cristina Kirchner and Mauricio Macri who represents a completely different ideology. The people spoke and Scioli lost. However, Cristina Kirchner has mentioned that she would run for president in 2019. If she succeeds, this would be her 3rd term, which is a concept I found ironic since in the States a president can only serve a maximum of two terms.  

I'm not going to get into the political stuff of who is better or who is worse because I honestly don't know. I do know that when Macri takes office on December 10th, things will change. Whether it's for the best or the worst remains to be seen. While some of his agendas seem promising, such as allowing import and export to once again flow freely in Argentina, research suggests that he was involved in the financial crisis that struck Argentina in 2001-2002. So … am I little worried? Hell yeah.

Allegations of voting fraud (like the Gore/Bush voting scandal) were made but a recount of the voting ballots on November 30th determined that Macri was indeed the winner. 

For Argentine citizens, voting is not an option. Having dual citizenship allowed me the privilege of adding my voice to the chorus of millions that wanted what was best for this country. 

Now there's only one thing left to do and that is to concentrate on the elections back home for 2016. Being thousands of miles away and with a budget too limited to return even for a visit means that I have to vote as an absentee voter. 

So how do I do this? 

I went to this site: 

It was super easy. I just had to add the last address that I lived in when I was in the U.S., my social security number and answer some generic questions such as whether I was interested in voting for every state election or just the major ones like the presidential election. After that, I just had to print the form out, sign it and send it to the voting district back home.  

Since the mail in Argentina is not very reliable when sending or receiving things abroad, I have no way of knowing whether they will receive it. Since I'm not the kind of person to leave things to chance I will probably find an expat that is traveling home and have them send the application through the U.S. postal service. 

Then it's just a matter of getting my ballot in the mail when the time comes (and hope it actually gets to me) so I can vote. I will tell you (and I better not get any nasty comments for this) that I am a Democrat so it's a safe bet I won't be voting for Donald Trump. But even if I'd been a Republican I wouldn't have done it either. 

There are some people back home in the States and even some expats that I've met that don't vote for their own personal reasons (and I'm not bashing anyone so don't start hating me). I'll just end this entry by saying that voting for change in one country is wonderful but to get to vote for two countries is beyond a right or a privilege … it is an honor.