: Leftist Millennial Elected President in Chile After Running on Higher Taxes, a Green Economy and Greater Equality #WorldNEWS Leftist Gabriel Boric was elected president of Chile on Sunday by a larger-than-expected
Leftist Millennial Elected President in Chile After Running on Higher Taxes, a Green Economy and Greater Equality #WorldNEWS
Leftist Gabriel Boric was elected president of Chile on Sunday by a larger-than-expected margin, giving him a mandate to push for higher taxes, greener industries and greater equality after a contest focused on discontent over an investor-friendly economy that has left many behind.
The former student protest leader won 56% of the vote, beating conservative rival Jose Antonio Kast’s 44%. The victory is likely to spook markets that fear interventionist policies. Boric, 35, will take office in March as one of the youngest presidents in the world and with an ambitious agenda.
His win in a runoff paves the way not only for a generational shift but also for the biggest economic changes in decades for one of Latin America’s richest countries, a global financial market favorite. It was a highly polarized campaign that only moderated in the final stretch as both contenders wooed centrists. He will face enormous challenges including a divided congress, sharp economic slowdown, the writing of a new constitution and the lingering threat of social unrest.
“We cannot continue to allow the poor to pay for the inequalities of Chile,” Boric told thousands of cheering supporters in a fiery victory speech which also acknowledged all he needs to do to build alliances. “We will reach out and build bridges so our citizens can live a better life. ”
He repeated something he told President Sebastian Pinera in a conversation between them broadcast after results were announced: “The agreements need to be among all Chileans and not made behind closed doors. ”
They will meet Monday to begin the transition. Kast quickly conceded and spoke to Boric on Sunday evening.
Streets across the nation of 19 million were filled with honking cars and waving banners in celebration of the changing of the guard. Turnout was about 56% of registered voters, nearly 10 percentage points higher than the first round last month.
But Boric’s early focus on outreach has an undeniable logic. As he seeks a set of radical shifts, he needs to build a coalition with centrists and hard leftists who have clashed for decades.
“He will face a divided parliament, so passage of legislation will be difficult and will require strong negotiating skills and pragmatism,” noted Jennifer Pribble, professor of political science at the University of Richmond.
Boric describes himself as a moderate socialist who shuns the hard left models of Cuba and Venezuela. Still, Kast and his supporters warned of Boric’s alliance with the communist party as a risk.
“This is the worst scenario that the markets could have envisioned,” said Klaus Kaempfe, portfolio solutions director at Credicorp Capital in Santiago.
0 Reactions React