Milei gives himself salary raise, backtracks after social media clashes

The president blamed former President Cristina Fernández de Kirchner for the increase despite signing a decree authorizing it in February

President Javier Milei has rescinded a 48% raise for himself and his cabinet following backlash over the increase and his claim that it was automatic despite signing the decree authorizing it. News of the salary increase, the president’s response, the backlash, and the announced decree annulments all happened on X (formerly Twitter) throughout Saturday.

Peronist deputies called attention to the 48% salary increase after Milei questioned the 30% raise established for all lawmakers this week. According to a chart published by deputies such as Victoria Tolosa Paz, Milei earned over AR$6 million in February. “Milei lies to us while brandishing the austerity flag,” she wrote on X on Saturday, calling for the decree enabling the 48% increase to be annulled. 

The decree that enabled the increase is number 206/2024, published on February 28. However, the president claimed on X that the raise had been applied automatically.

“I have just been informed that as a result of a decree signed by former President Cristina Kircher in 2010 […] this administration’s political staff has been granted an automatic salary raise,” Milei wrote on X on Saturday afternoon. 

The decree he referred to — number 799/2010 — established that all public officials should always earn more than public administration employees. In the same post, Milei promised to overturn that decree and “rescind any raise the political staff may have received.”

After Milei blamed his salary increase on Kirchner’s 2010 decree, the former president and vice president also took to X, saying she expected him to be “braver” and not “blame a woman” for his actions. 

“It was revealed that you and your cabinet increased your salary by 48%, and you have no better excuse than putting the blame on me, for a decree I signed 14 years ago?” she said Saturday evening.

As part of their back and forth, Kirchner pointed out Saturday that Milei’s salary increase had not been applied automatically, but was the result of the decree signed in February. 

“Admit that you signed it, cashed it out, and were caught,” Kirchner told Milei in her post. “As you can see, the decree I signed 14 years ago has nothing to do with this.”

At 11:30 p.m. on Saturday, Milei’s presidential office account on X wrote that all salary increases for the president, vice president, ministers, and secretaries were annulled and Kirchner’s 2010 decree was overturned.

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