BUENOS AIRES – The socialists have triumphed in the governor’s race in the Argentine province of Santa Fe, according to a definitive vote recount made public on Tuesday, 10 days after the balloting resulted in a virtual three-way tie.
The gubernatorial contest pitted Miguel Lifschitz, of the incumbent socialist FPCS party, against humorist Miguel del Sel, from the conservative PRO, and Omar Perotti, the candidate of President Cristina Fernandez’s FpV.
According to FPCS provincial chairman Joaquin Blanco, Lifschitz emerged victorious by a margin of just 1,700 votes in a province with some 2.5 million registered voters.
His win confirms the continuity of the socialists after governing Santa Fe, one of the country’s key electoral districts, for the past eight years.
Despite the fact that the Electoral Tribunal has not provided official notification of the election result, in remarks to Todo Noticias television, Blanco confirmed that Lifschitz had won a plurality over his two rivals.
Both Del Sel and Perotti had kept their hopes alive that they would emerge victorious given that the margin of votes separating the three candidates were smaller than the number of polling places that had not been counted in the initial tabulation.
Santa Fe, with 3.2 million residents, is the country’s third-largest province, after Buenos Aires and Cordoba.
Argentina’s political class is paying close attention to results of provincial elections as the country prepares for October’s national ballot to choose a successor to President Cristina Fernandez, who is barred by term limits from running again.