After a Sunday of gubernatorial elections, the Radical Civic Union Party (UCR) has held power in the key northern province of Jujuy, while La Rioja re-elected ruling coalition Frente de Todos’s governor Ricardo Quintela. In Misiones, Frente Renovador de la Concordia’s candidate Hugo Passalacqua will serve another term after four years out.
The winning candidates will take power as provincial governors on December 10.
Carlos Sadir of Frente Cambia Jujuy, who is currently serving as provincial Finance Minister to governor and presidential candidate Gerardo Morales, triumphed with almost half (49.5%) of the votes. The Frente Justicialista, in representation of the ruling Frente de Todos coalition, and Left Front – Unity, came a distant second (22%) and third (13%), respectively.
“The people of Jujuy have ratified change,” Morales told press at a hotel outside regional capital, San Salvador de Jujuy. “Jujuy will not go back to being the same as it was in 2015, because it has recovered peace and put an end to violence and corruption,” he continued, in an apparent reference to social leader Milagro Sala, who was controversially imprisoned in 2016 and is currently under house arrest.
He spoke flanked by Horacio Rodríguez Larreta, mayor of Buenos Aires and opposition coalition Juntos por el Cambio (JxC) presidential hopeful, and UCR Senator Martín Lousteau, who travelled to Jujuy for the results. The UCR is a member of JxC nationally.
The re-election of FdT’s Ricardo Quintela in La Rioja confirmed the province’s continuity as an officialist bastion. Martín Menem, who was running for the libertarian coalition La Libertad Avanza led by Javier Milei, split the right-wing vote, and Quintela triumphed over second-placed JxC.
“Simply, thanks for keeping betting on this project, a province with more rights, more work, more services, more public works, and more social justice,” Quintela said in a message on social media.
With 91% of the votes counted, Quintela had 51% and his JxC rival Felipe Álvarez, 32%.
The Frente Renovador de la Concordia Social, a centrist cross-party alliance, kept the governor’s office, and most of the districts, as former governor Hugo Passalacqua won a crushing victory against JxC’s Martín Arjol.
In a press conference he gave in the provincial capital of Posadas alongside current governor Oscar Herrera Ahuad —who will take office as a state congressman– and party leader Carlos Rovira, Passalaqcua celebrated their victory.
“We did things right. We are in a period of renovation. There’s a new generation and that is very important for the province. He [Rovira] invited us, a bunch of nobodies. And bringing in a bunch of nobodies turned into 75% of people voting for us”, said Passalacqua, who previously served as governor between 2015 and 2019.
By Monday, that margin had narrowed slightly, with Passalacqua securing 64% of the vote, compared with just 27% for his JxC rival.
The Frente Renovador also managed to keep the capital city of Posadas with a solid victory by Leonardo Stellato, who got re-elected as city mayor.
The electoral calendar
All provinces except Corrientes and Santiago del Estero will hold local elections this year. Provincial governors lead the local government, representing their provinces in national and international politics, although they do not have the power to disregard national laws.