December 9, 2013
Massa’s camp intensifies rivalry with Scioli
Solá: no chance of deal with BA province governor in 2015
The Renewal Front headed by Tigre Mayor Sergio Massa is seeking to present its leader and main candidate as an alternative for the 2015 presidential elections. Former governor Felipe Solá yesterday denied that Massa would share a ticket with Buenos Aires Governor Daniel Scioli.
Solá, who is running on the fourth slot on Massa’s slate of Lower House candidates in Buenos Aires, emphatically dismissed any possible alliance with Scioli for the elections to be held in two years’ time.
“We are not thinking of running for the provincial government. We will run for the presidency,” Solá said in a bid to spell out the Renewal Front’s intentions after winning the PASO primaries held last Sunday. Solá went further and said that “not even drunk” would Massa accept to share a ticket with Scioli, who has expressed his desire to become president.
“We are not interested in the Buenos Aires province. We are trying to establish a front, to see how things go and then we’ll see. This is not aimed at the province,” Solá said in conversations with a radio station.
Solá was Scioli’s predecessor and was also a Kirchnerite official, but he decided to join Massa’s front and has become one of the Tigre mayor’s main spokesmen after his election win on Sunday in Buenos Aires province over the Kirchnerite candidate, Martín Insaurralde.
Solá also criticized opposition lawmaker Francisco de Narváez, who is seeking to renew his seat in Buenos Aires province. The Union for Freedom and Work headed by De Narváez came in fourth in last week’s elections and there were rumours that the tycoon would drop out of the race in order to benefit Massa in the October midterms. However, De Narváez rejected that speculation and has said he will run for Congress in October.
“He is being functional to the government’s interests,” Solá added and said that De Narváez tried to negotiate with Massa when they were preparing the lists for the primaries ahead of Sunday’s vote.
“He had a meeting with Sergio fifteen days before the lists had to be registered and he asked him if he was running or not for the Lower House. He said that he wanted to take the second slot on the ballot list and Sergio told him: ‘You’d better name your list, and I’ll name mine.’”
Solá’s opinion is a reaction to Scioli’s recent statements about the political situation after the Victory Front’s defeat in Buenos Aires province and other major districts, including Buenos Aires City, Córdoba and Santa Fe provinces. In an interview with the conservative daily La Nación, the Buenos Aires governor admitted that he still wants to run for president in 2015, a desire he had already expressed before the elections and that had caused him some trouble with ultra-Kirchnerites.
Asked if he thought Massa would be then his main contender, the governor said: “In fact, I don’t speculate on what others say. I have already made my definitions, I was clear enough and people understood. We’ll see. There are two years left and the important thing is that governors and the whole of Peronism are willing to support our policies.”
Without addressing anyone, Scioli praised the primaries as a method to elect candidates within political parties. Massa was President Cristina Fernández de Kirchner’s Cabinet chief between 2008 and 2009, after a long conflict with the farmers’ organizations. Before launching the Renewal Front, Massa’s attitude to the Kirchnerism was not clear and there were sectors within the ruling party that wanted the Tigre Mayor to run for Congress representing the Victory Front (FpV).
“We should confront dispersion and atomization. It’s a pending issue for Peronism and for other political parties, as well. I’ll work to unite Peronism,” Scioli underlined.
Before the lists were named, Scioli and Massa reportedly engaged in negotiations to join forces. If that was true, Scioli decided to stay on the Kirchnerite side and since then he has become the favourite target of Massa’s allies and supporters.
A week ago, Massa’s wife, Malena Galmarini, insulted the governor, calling him a “piece of shit”. Although the Tigre Mayor tried to cool down the controversy, Scioli also received criticisms from those who gathered at the Victory Front’s campaign headquarters on Sunday.
Herald with DyN, Télam