June 14, 2017 / 8:50 PM / a month ago

Argentina's Fernandez presents new party, eyes Senate seat

2 Min Read

Argentina's President Mauricio Macri smiles next to Jorge Faurie during his swearing-in ceremony as new Foreign Minister, while senator Federico Pinedo applauds, at the Casa Rosada Presidential Palace in Buenos Aires, Argentina, June 12, 2017.Martin Acosta

BUENOS AIRES (Reuters) - Former Argentine President Cristina Fernandez on Wednesday announced a new political party as she eyes a bid for a Senate seat in October's mid-term election.

Rather than affiliating for the election with Peronism, the country's dominant political movement, Fernandez and allies unveiled the "Citizen's Unity" party, which aims to fight "the reinstatement of the neo-liberal model" under President Mauricio Macri.

By further polarizing the opposition, however, the populist Fernandez increases the chances of Macri's "Cambiemos" coalition making a strong showing in October's legislative election that would enable him to deepen his free-market reforms.

"The good news for the government is that the opposition is divided," said Ricardo Rouvier, a political analyst.

Fernandez could end up competing against her former transportation minister Florencio Randazzo, who has already announced his candidacy.

She has not formally launched her candidacy and has until June 24 to do so, but two sources close to her told Reuters she intends to run in Argentina's most populous province.

Reporting by Nicolas Misculin; Writing by Caroline Stauffer and Hugh Bronstein; Editing by Steve Orlofsky

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