After her poor performance in last weekend's debate, the center-right candidate, Patricia Bullrich, has toughened her speech. In an interview, she proposed recording the prisoners and repealing labor rights by decree .
Concepción M. Moreno | EFE
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Leer en español: Elecciones en Argentina: Patricia Bullrich endurece su discurso
Recording prisoners while they speak with their lawyers or repealing labor laws by decree are some electoral proposals that the candidate of Juntos por el Cambio (center-right), Patricia Bullrich, made in the last hours in Argentina in a clear hardening of her message.
Of the shortlist of main candidates to occupy the Casa Rosada (seat of the Argentine Government) on December 10, the one who was Minister of Security in the Government of Mauricio Macri (2015-2019) was the third with the most votes last August, behind the leader of La Libertad Avanza (far-right), Javier Milei, and the Minister of Economy and official candidate (Peronist), Sergio Massa.
Although her political force was the second with the most support in the PASO (primary, open, simultaneous and mandatory) elections, held on August 13, Bullrich was the third on an individual level and, according to most of the surveys with a view to the October 22 elections, would be left out of a possible second round, which would be held on November 19.
After focusing her campaign on "ending the Kirchnerism that left Argentina devastated", in allusion to the wing of Peronism linked to the now deceased former president Néstor Kirchner (2003-2007) and the current vice president and former president Cristina Fernández (2007-2015), her weak performance in the pre-election debate on October 1 has made her go one step further and toughen the message.
Although she claimed to have had a severe flu, which impaired her faculties, the truth is that Bullrich became evident when Milei and Massa asked her specific questions about her economic proposals, the weak point of her speech.
Argentina made it clear in August that it was divided into three thirds, since the three main candidates approached 30% support, but none reached it, so the campaign strategies in recent weeks try to attract not only the undecided, but to snatch votes from rivals.
"His defense has to be recorded"
In this context, the interview that Bullrich gave this Tuesday to journalist Alejandro Fantino on the Neura Media station absorbed a good part of political gatherings and talks in Argentina in the last few hours, since in it he proposed recording the prisoners while they speak with their defense and repeal labor laws via decree.
After talking about drug traffickers -the main axis of her fight against crime- being isolated in maximum security prisons, she said that "what can enter, which is a constitutional right, is their defense, and their defense has to be recorded."
"When you have a prisoner who may be sending a message to someone, you record his communication with the defense," she stated before the announcer's interruptions to argue that this is unconstitutional.
"I can record it, I can have it as an element of evidence, I can not listen to it, have it with a protection system for that communication and if tomorrow there is a crime and a judge orders...", continued the Juntos por el Cambio candidate, who added that "the issue is to put order in the country and in the prisons, who is in charge? Is the state in charge or are the criminals in charge?"
Likewise, she referred to the repeal of labor laws "in two minutes" by decree.
"Whoever does not accept the rules of the game and begins to want to put obstacles in Argentina is going to have consequences," added Bullrich, who has stated in his campaign at various times, such as Milei, that she will end the demonstrations and street protests to defend on public roads, openly confronting the union movement, which has strong power in the country.
Criticism came from all over the political spectrum, but without a doubt the center-right candidate, in whom former President Macri expressed his confidence from the United States, where he is traveling, once again placed herself at the center of the discussion while waiting for the second debate among the five presidential candidates - to those mentioned are added the dissident Peronist Juan Schiaretti and the leader of the Left Front, Myriam Bregman -.
This meeting, which will take place this Sunday at the Faculty of Law of the University of Buenos Aires, will focus on work and production, and human development, housing and environmental protection, and precisely security, one of the pillars of Bullrich.