December 9, 2013
Ruling further splits UNEN
BA City Legislature ballot still an issue
Electoral Judge María Romilda Servini de Cubría ruled yesterday in favour of congressional Suma+ candidate Carla Carrizo’s appeal to change the UNEN ticket to meet the gender quota law. According to her resolution, the Radical Party candidate must be placed in the fourth slot instead of economist Adrián Ramos.
Therefore, lawmaker and South Coalition candidate Alcira Argumedo’s challenge to occupy that position in the list was rejected.
Far from settling the UNEN internal dispute, the Electoral Court’s decision unleashed the opposite reaction among Elisa Carrió’s political front members.
Since yesterday and until Monday, a series of harsh discussions and secret meetings are being held between UNEN officials to decide whether to heed Servini de Cubría’s resolution.
The electoral judge said in her ruling that it’s up to Radical Party, and not UNEN coalition authorities, to replace or rename the candidate in fourth place on the ballot as the position in dispute belongs to the Suma+ faction.
But South Coalition’s allies are not convinced about this stance and are considering the possibility of filing an appeal before the 48-hour deadline is up. During meetings, UNEN associates sealed an agreement to share the Congress ballot paper slots among those factions that obtained over 22 percent of the votes in August primaries.
From that point on, UNEN factions would be assigned their positions following proportional distribution according to the D’Hont system. The decision resulted in the South Coalition getting slots one (Carrió), three (Fernando Sánchez) and five (Argumedo) and leaving number two (Martín Lousteau) and four (Ramos) for Suma+.
Although the ballot paper slots continue, the first five candidates are the ones with the better chance to grabbing a legislative seat in elections scheduled for October 27.
Last Monday, Servini de Cubría ruled that UNEN original ticket’s distribution failed to adjust to the gender quota rule that stipulates that a female candidate must be positioned “at least” after two male nominees and that candidates of the same gender must not occupy more than two consecutive slots.
Carrizo was the first one to react as part of the Lousteau and Radical Party coalition and asked the electoral court to be assigned that position as the first female candidate on the Suma+ ballot paper for last month’s primaries.
The day after, South Coalition’s allies complained and filed their own appeal stating that their candidate, Argumedo, should get priority as the most voted-for woman candidate after Carrió in the UNEN primary.
Servini de Cubría argued in her ruling that neither popular will nor ballot paper representation should be affected when adjusting the ticket to the gender quota law. Therefore Suma’s slot should be respected and occupied with a candidate of that fac tion, the judge said.
As Suma+ allies confirmed yesterday to the Herald, Ramos will switch slots with Carrizo although he seconded Lousteau on their ticket in August. Consequently, his chances of entering the Lower House in October will be fewer.
Meanwhile, Renewal Front Buenos Aires congressional candidate José Ignacio de Mendiguren filed a request for courts to "immediately" investigate the hypothetical "civil coup" plan against the national government, following Carrió's accusations against him and other Peronists with "businessmen support."
"Carrió's statements must be investigated. If they are true, she should have denounced them in court, not only in media,"he said.