Sat, 02 Dec 2023

Javier Milei will "Make Argentina Great Again," the former US president has declared

Former US President Donald Trump has congratulated libertarian candidate Javier Milei on winning the Argentinian presidential election. Milei, a self-described "anarcho-capitalist," has been compared to Trump for his brash personality and tirades against Argentina's "political caste."

Milei defeated Economy Minister Sergio Massa in a runoff election on Sunday, taking nearly 56% of the vote to Massa's 44%. Milei's 11-point victory defied pre-election opinion polls, which showed him holding only a slight lead over Massa.

"The whole world was watching! I am very proud of you. You will turn your Country around and truly Make Argentina Great Again!" Trump wrote on his Truth Social platform on Sunday.

Milei and Trump both entered politics as outsiders, vowing to dismantle the political establishment in their respective countries. His fiery speeches against Argentina's "political caste" mirrored Trump's invectives against the Washington, DC "swamp," and both men won  by promising to gut social spending, control inflation, and take a hardline stance against the growing power of China.

Describing himself as an "anarcho-capitalist," Milei has promised to abolish Argentina's central bank, swap the Argentine peso for the US dollar as the country's official currency, and close more than half of the Argentine government's ministries. 

His victory ends almost 20 years of rule by the Peronist party, a left-wing political machine that has won ten out of the 13 presidential elections in which it has been allowed to run since 1946. Over the last decade, inflation has soared to nearly 150%, the number of Argentinians living in poverty has risen to 40%, and the peso has fallen to a record low against the US dollar.

"The model of decadence has reached its end. There is no turning back," Milei declared in a victory speech on Sunday. "Enough of the impoverishing power of the caste. Today we once again embrace the model of liberty, to once again become a world power." 

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