Argentina's Supreme Court Thursday voted Horacio Rosatti as its new Chief Justice, while the incumbent Carlos Rosenkrantz will be next in line, it was announced.
Both Rosatti and Rosenkrantz were appointed by former President Mauricio Macri. The Supreme Court's Chief Justice is fourth in line to the Argentine Presidency in case of vacancy. Rosatti is to head one of the three branches of government for the next three years.
Rosenkrantz's term is to expire next Thursday, September 30. In addition to his own vote and that of Rosenkrantz, Rosatti garnered a decisive three-vote majority after Justice Juan Carlos Maqueda stepped aside from his historic alignment with former Chief Justice Ricardo Lorenzetti, who did not sign up for the virtual voting, which Justice Elena Highton de Nolasco followed suit.
Maqueda then nominated Rosatti and Rosenkrantz for the two positions to be filled and they both accepted his idea by voting for themselves.
Unlike when Lorenzetti presided over the Court, his successors do not have the same power among their colleagues. Rulings require three of the five votes and Rosatti is unlikely to have the endorsement of Lorenzetti, who is believed to control a court majority together with Highton and Maqueda.
Rosatti is a Constitutional Law scholar from Santa Fe. He served as Justice Minister between 2004 and 2005 under President Néstor Kirchner and was appointed by Macri to serve on the highest court together with Carlos Rosenkrantz.
The future Chief Justice was also a member of the Constitutional Asembly in charge of reforming the national Constitution back in 1994.
The 65 year old Rosatti is a politician, writer, university professor, and holds a Ph.D. in Legal and Social Sciences and a Master's in Impact Assessment and Environmental Management. He currently heads the Argentine Association of Constitutional Law.
In 1995 he was elected mayor of the city of Santa Fe. In 2003 he was appointed Attorney General of the National Treasury, being the head of the legal defense of the Argentine State against the claims processed by foreign investors before international arbitration tribunals after the economic crisis of 2001.
On that occasion, he argued that the arbitration awards issued by ad hoc tribunals could not prevail over the National Constitution and that national courts were empowered to review such decisions if they violated the principles of national public law.