An ardent opponent of socialism, critical of feminist policies and abortion, and averse to linking human actions with climate change – Milei is most far-right leader which the Left-leaning Argentina has seen in ages.
Controversial economist Javier Milei, a far-right libertarian outsider in Argentina’s politics, is set to be the country’s next president. In the presidential election held on November 19, ‘the lion’ – as Milei prefers to call himself – secured 56 percent of the votes.
Milei’s ascent to power is expected to shake the political landscape of Argentina, which has been historically influenced by socialism in Latin America.
The 53-year-old has not only promised to tighten the fiscal expenditures – seen by critics as a tight overhaul of the welfare schemes – but has went a step ahead by promising to scrap the local currency and shutting down the central bank.
Here’s a look at who Javier Milei is.
Until a few years ago, Milei was a prominent expert featuring on TV news shows, who critiqued the lack of fiscal discipline and condemned the political class for failing to improve the economic condition of the masses.
But in 2021, he took the political plunge and was elected as a lawmaker, on the symbol of his own political party – Libertad Avanza (Freedom Advances).
In August this year, he shocked political pundits in South America by emerging as the candidate with the highest vote share in the primary election. He secured 30.5 percent of the votes, higher as compared to 28 percent bagged by the main conservative coalition and 27 percent secured by the ruling Peronist coalition.
In the run-up to the presidential poll contest, Milei drew headlines worldover with his “anarcho-capitalist” views. He has proposed to replace the local currency peso with the US dollar, and eliminate the central bank in a bid to prevent politicians from “printing more money”.