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Argentine minister ‘Wado’ de Pedro to run on Peronist ticket in presidential primaries


By Nicolás Misculin

BUENOS AIRES (Reuters) – Argentine interior minister Eduardo ‘Wado’ de Pedro will run on a ticket with ex-Cabinet chief Juan Manzur as pre-candidates for the ruling Peronist bloc in the country’s August presidential primaries, a government source and officials said on Thursday.

The nomination, after months of uncertainty of who might run, positions de Pedro as one of the frontrunners to lead the ruling bloc into general elections in October, where they are behind in the polls amid rising poverty and 100%-plus inflation.

The formal deadline to register pre-candidates to run in the primaries closes on Saturday night with other Peronist tickets expected to join de Pedro and Tucuman governor Manzur, who represent the more leftist wing of the government coalition.

The primary candidates for the main opposition conservative bloc Juntos por el Cambio include Buenos Aires city mayor Horacio Larreta and ex-security minister Patricia Bullrich. Also riding high is far-right libertarian economist Javier Milei.

On Twitter Tucuman vice governor Osvaldo Jaldo welcomed the Peronist candidates and gave his support. “This is the formula that represents all the provinces of the country, and that the interior and Tucuman will support,” he wrote.

De Pedro, 46, a center-left Peronist lawyer and activist, is known as being a more youthful, dialogue-led politician, although some question his experience as a political operator.

Manzur, 54, was twice elected governor of the northern province of Tucuman, a position he temporarily left to take over as national Cabinet chief in 2021 until earlier this year.

(Reporting by Nicolas Misculin; Writing by Adam Jourdan)

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