Argentina Primary Elections 2023: Libertarian candidate surprises by leading presidential race

By August 13, 2023

Buenos Aires, Argentina — The Argentine libertarian party, La Libertad Avanza, led by presidential candidate Javier Milei surprised everyone after receiving around 32% of the votes in the primary elections held on August 13. 

After hours of delay, and with around 75% of the scrutinized votes, the election results came in and showed a surprising result: Javier Milei became the single presidential candidate with the biggest number of votes, over 5.7 million around the country.

Milei, a 52-year-old economist, got into politics prior to the 2021 legislative elections with an anti-politics speech and plans to dollarize the economy. Back then, his party received two benches in Congress with around 13% of the votes in the city of Buenos Aires. 

Today, the ruling party, Unión por la Patria, received a partial total of 25% of votes (4.7 million), split between the actual minister of Economy, Sergio Massa, with 20%; and underdog candidate, Juan Grabois, who received around 5%. 

The main opposition party, Juntos por el Cambio, also held what was expected to be the toughest primary election between Horacio Rodríguez Larreta, actual Mayor of Buenos Aires, and Patricia Bullrich. They received 10% and 17% respectively, with the party receiving 5 million in total.

The winning candidates from each party and coalition will face off in the first round of general elections on October 22. If a run-off election is needed, it will take place on November 19.