It took two months of management and a strong parliamentary failure for Argentine politics to discuss something that was strongly debated even before Javier Milei won the runoff in November. The President made clear his intention to advance a Government with the PRO, which is already partially integrated by Patricia Bullrich, and which is once again debated internally between enthusiasm, distrust and caution.
Warnings and conditions arise from the different internal sectors of the PRO: there must be a clear agreement with Mauricio Macri, in any case not the entire party will accompany, and the Executive would have to do a “cleanup”, which would seem to have already begun with the departure of to the head of the Anses, Osvaldo Giordano, and the Secretary of Mining, Flavia Royón, who respond to the Peronism of Cordoba and Salta, in the sights of the national government after the fall of the Omnibus Law in Deputies.
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“A new political redesign is coming,” Bullrich said in the last few hours, after the defeat suffered by the Government in Deputies and hinted, although carefully, that the possibility of advancing in a coalition between La Libertad Avanza and La Libertad Avanza was being discussed. pro. Hours later, on a trip to Rome, Milei revealed his interest in a merger between both forces and the creation of an interbloc in Congress, where the libertarian space is in a clear minority, as was demonstrated.
According to what is transmitted in the yellow space, the stage is still “too green.” Both in the most Macri sector, as well as in the bullrichista wing and in the most “dialogue” wing, they warn that the first step is to “organize the party”, which will elect its authorities on March 17, and Macri is heading to preside over it. This also does not mean that there cannot be some type of agreement beforehand.
The former president, Mauricio Macri, and the current Minister of Security, Patricia Bullrich (Photo: NA – Damián Dopacio).
In the PRO they understand that Milei's bet is to reconfigure a political map, with two clear contrasting spaces: “The systems are reconfigured by mirrors. Kirchnerism achieved that: JxC was born, not as an ideological unit – you had us and the Civic Coalition – but under the idea of republicanism. Well, Milei puts 'caste', backwardness, etc. on the other side. But he could force a map divided between a strong center-left and a strong center-right, but he should refine the concept of caste, because he has been bitching at those of us who help and added Daniel Scioli to the government,” analyzes an important Macrista leader. .
In the party they remembered in the last hours that the yellow bloc in Deputies “behaved with the Omnibus Law better than the libertarians”, something that is technically true, considering that the PRO voted unitedly in favor in general and in particular and, for example, Carolina Píparo – who was nothing less than Milei's candidate for governor of Buenos Aires – rejected some of the points. But also the yellow deputies – even the “doves” – worked and strongly defended the final version of the project.
Now, in the same way, deputies from the yellow bloc warned that – although in recent days the possibility of eventually moving forward in the formation of an interbloc with LLA was discussed informally -, it is not well regarded by all members. In the Senate, in fact, it would be even more difficult.
The head of the Buenos Aires Government, Horacio Rodríguez Larreta, together with the former president, Mauricio Macri. (Photo: Sarah Pabst/Bloomberg).
“It is one thing to have more officials in the government and another thing to form a coalition or an interbloc. Many of us are not willing to be part of the Government. If it is about forcing from that side, I don't think there will be a good result or that unity will be sustained,” warned a deputy from the dialogue wing, who, however, defended and voted in favor of the government's reform package.
“We are in the internal process that we wisely pushed until March. It is clear that there will be people on the road if the idea of an interblock or a coalition moves forward. The question is how many,” acknowledged a Macrista legislator, who discounted that, in a scenario like this, figures like the former head of government and presidential candidate Horacio Rodríguez Larreta would form their own party outside of the PRO.
“First organize the party, then work on a path of confluence with LLA and arrive at a common front in 2025. At what speed, with what depth, we will have to see how it evolves and how it can be done. What cannot happen to us is what happens to the radicals in Congress, which is a total loss of identity,” adds a bullrichist deputy.
The possibility of a “government agreement”, or “co-government” or “government coalition” between La Libertad Avanza and the PRO has been discussed since Milei won the runoff, and even before, when the libertarian left out of the second round to Together for Change, which had Bullrich as a candidate for president. In the middle, paraphrasing Macri, “things happened.”
Despite the fact that there are several PRO leaders, linked to the former president and the current Minister of Security, who make up the Executive in second lines, Macri's plan for the PRO to formally integrate the Government never came to fruition. The biggest break occurred when everything seemed agreed for Cristian Ritondo to be the president of the Chamber of Deputies and Milei finally chose Martín Menem from La Rioja.
“This novelty of a coalition arises 100% from Milei or the Government. Mauricio talks to him several times a week. The President thanks him, and then he goes and does the opposite or what Nicolás Posse or Guillermo Francos tells him. The one who stopped any government agreement was Posse under threat of resignation, and Francos was the one who operated so that Cristian would not be president of Deputies,” denounces a PRO man very close to the former president.
The head of the PRO in Deputies, Cristian Ritondo, during the debate on the Omnibus Law. To the right of him, the bullrichist Damian Arabia and, to the left of him, the “dialogueist” Silvia Lospennato. (Photo: Télam / Eliana Obregón)
“When we supported him for the runoff, the intention was always: whether we win or lose, we must generate a definitive liberal center-right space. The will to build something has to clearly come from Milei. We don't want to eat the curve either. The priority is to organize the PRO, build an alternative for 2025, we are going to get on a ship to which we were not invited. But if the will is there, then the Government has to organize itself,” warns the same reference and points out that, with Patricia already within the Executive, the person the President should negotiate with is Macri, who would remain in Villa La Angostura until December 20. February.
When PRO leaders talk that the Government must get itself in order. They refer, on the one hand, to dozens of vacant positions within the Executive itself, but also to spaces of power, very important in cash or for territorial weight. These places today are in the hands of Peronism, be it the PJ of Cordoba – although they have already begun to be expelled for the role of their political force in the failure of the Omnibus Law in Deputies -, or of officials who did not abandon their positions with the change of management on December 10. “They are agencies of the AFIP, ANSES, PAMI, Customs, undersecretaries, in the hands of Kirchnerism,” summarizes one.
“The only thing that has changed since December is that they lost a law in Congress and that they realized that we do work well. But in the PRO we have fewer incentives than in December. In this context, the more time, the less will. The party gains nothing by forming a parliamentary coalition with the ruling party, it would gain if it has ministers, the presidency of the Chamber… a 'macro' agreement that includes government power,” concludes another PRO deputy.