It’s been three days since the PASO primaries left us with a huge question mark about who really got the most votes in the Buenos Aires province. And as the slow recount to find out officially begins, former President Cristina Fernández de Kirchner is at it again.
Spoking publicly about the results for the first time since Sunday’s, Cristina uploaded a video on social media in which she’s having a conversation with her former Defense Minister and now candidate for deputy in the Santa Fe province, Agustín Rossi.
In their conversation, Fernández de Kirchner again accuses the Macri administration of “manipulating” the tallying process to make it look like her opponent in the Buenos Aires province’s senatorial race, Esteban Bullrich, had finished on top.
“A planned and timed manipulation,” she says from a room at the PATRIA Institute, a Kirchnerite think tank in Buenos Aires. Kirchnerites insist that electoral authorities initially began counting votes in districts of the Buenos Aires province that were friendlier to Mauricio Macri’s Cambiemos alliance in order to make it look like the difference between him and Cristina Kirchner was much larger than it actually was. As the night progressed, after Macri’s celebratory speech, the difference began shrinking and the race ended up in a virtual tie.
“When it comes to elections, I have enough experience as an observer and as an activist. They played mind games with the people because they staged something that didn’t exist. They chanted, danced, and even said they had won in Santa Fe,” Fernández is seen telling Rossi, who went through a similar situation in his home province. When the polls closed and the recount began, initial results put him in second place after Cambiemos’ candidate Albor Cantard. However, as the hours went by, he managed to turn things around and ended up on top, beating his opponent 27.87 percent to 27.13 percent.
“In Santa Fe they stopped the recount process with 75 percent of the votes tallied,” Rossi says. “After I went live on C5N they started uploading the results in [the city of] Rosario five minutes later. We ended up half a point above them,” he added.
In another moment during the conversation, the former President said that “we are detecting several massive irregularities and we’ll see what we do about them.”
“This never happened before,” she insisted.
Both former officials also criticized Cambiemos’ plan to implement the so-called “electronic ballot” in elections, which their representatives argue eliminates the risk of fraud and drastically accelerates the tallying process. In fact, when consulted about Fernández’s remarks on Sunday, Buenos Aires province Governor María Eugenia Vidal said that “those who are part of Kirchnerism and didn’t vote for the electronic ballot owe an explanation to society.”
However, Fernández assured that this would actually be a method for them to further guarantee their ability to tamper with elections: “The electronic ballot is a recipe for cheating. The entire world is ditching the electronic vote but they keep insisting,” she added.
In contrast, representatives from the Macri administration have said repeatedly that the recount process was normal in speed and downplayed the fact that a few ballot boxes weren’t tallied. “This electoral process was more transparent than the ones we had in the past, even when using these obsolete tools” said Cabinet Chief Marcos Peña yesterday.
The so-called “definitive tallying” began yesterday, and it is expected to take at least 10 days to reveal the results of the ballot boxes that so far haven’t been tallied. Only then we’ll know who really won.