Buenos Aires City Deputy María Eugenia Vidal has urged the right-wing party, Propuesta Republicana (PRO) to scrap all current candidacies to “start over.” This comes amid a whirlwind of tensions in the party and in the opposition coalition Juntos por el Cambio (JxC) generally.
“I think that the PRO has to cancel all the candidacies across all offices and start again, think about what is the best offer it can make to Argentines in the province, in the city, and in the country,” she said in an interview on Radio Rivadavia. “And, above all, show its government agenda and the rules by which it will compete.”
“I proposed concrete competition rules three weeks ago for things to be healthy and constructive as well as the roles everyone has to fulfill in the team.”
Vidal’s statements come a week after Buenos Aires City Mayor Horacio Rodríguez Larreta announced that national and city elections will be held on the same day but with separate ballots— the announcement has sparked fierce political infighting in the PRO. Vidal had spearheaded condemnation of the move even before it happened, with former President Mauricio Macri supporting her by calling it a “profound disappointment.” Former Security Minister and presidential pre-candidate Patricia Bullrich has also been vocal in her disapproval.
“PRO owes itself an honest discussion about its government program and shows it to society, which we have no matter who wins,” Vidal said. “If there is competition, what are the rules going to be? Because not everything is acceptable.”
Vidal was the governor of Buenos Aires province between 2015 and 2019. She hasn’t formally announced her candidacy but said in an event in Entre Ríos province earlier this month that she “wants to be president.”
Her comments come hours after far-right libertarian presidential hopeful Javier Milei announced his willingness to compete in a primary election for the presidential nomination against Bullrich within a potential new coalition.