The libertarian economist Javier Milei, leading the front “La Libertad Avanza,” (far-right) has emerged as the frontrunner in Argentina's Open, Mandatory, and Simultaneous Primary (PASO) elections, as indicated by the initial provisional scrutiny results released on Sunday.
With 61.21% of the voting tables counted, Milei has secured an impressive 32.57% of the votes, defying the primary election polls and creating shockwaves across the political spectrum.
The first batch of provisional results has confirmed the growing speculations that began circulating after the polling stations closed. Javier Milei, at the helm of La Libertad Avanza, stands as the most popular choice among presidential candidates, commanding a significant 32.57% of the votes. This preliminary data is reconfiguring the political landscape and hints at a substantial transformation in the electoral scenario leading up to the October elections.
In his debut bid for the Presidential office (having previously run as a candidate for national deputy in 2021), the libertarian economist has adeptly harnessed the widespread discontent with Argentina's economic and social challenges. He has even outperformed the predictions made by the majority of public opinion polls.
According to the provisional count, current Economy Minister Sergio Massa, the Unión por la Patria representative, secures the second spot in individual terms, gathering 20.68% of the votes. The rulling Unión por la Patria coalition, as a whole, has achieved 25.48% of the votes. As anticipated, the Minister of Economy has comfortably outpaced his internal rival, Juan Grabois, whose 4.90% of the votes did not materialize into the substantial support expected from Kirchnerism.
Within the Juntos por el Cambio alliance (that ruled the country between 2015 and 2019), the internal competition that garnered significant attention during the campaign has produced a victor—former Minister of Security, Patricia Bullrich, with a noteworthy 16.99% of the votes. Bullrich enjoys a lead of nearly 7 points over the head of the Buenos Aires Government, Horacio Rodríguez Larreta, who secured 10.61% of the votes.
Meanwhile, Juan Schiaretti of Hacemos por el país has consolidated a 5.20% share of the votes, with a commendable performance in Córdoba.
The hawks, the more steadfast factions of the PRO, received positive news from Buenos Aires City, where Jorge Macri emerged triumphant in the head-to-head race against Martín Lousteau, a political ally of Rodríguez Larreta, for the position of Head of Government.
As the results continue to unfold and the nation takes in this unexpected turn of events, the momentum behind Milei and the ripple effects across various parties' performances suggest a highly dynamic lead-up to the forthcoming elections expected due October.