Privatization and Democracy in Argentina: An Analysis of by Mariana Llanos (auth.)

By Mariana Llanos (auth.)

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The latter had normally national aspirations yet, in practice, they managed to gain support only in certain geographic areas. One of those was the UCeDe (Democratic Centre Union). It was founded in 1982 by Alvaro Alsogaray, and attempted to capture the support of the conservatives who had traditionally turned to the Armed Forces. By supporting liberalism and a free-market economic system, it became one of the most ideologically based parties. 2). Some small right-orientated parties also gained some measure of popular support by the late 1980s, with an anti-party, nationalist and populist 34 Privatization and Democracy in Argentina platform.

However, some comments should be made at this point. 43 Under the new Constitution, a president cannot issue decrees in the areas of criminal law, taxation, electoral law, or party political law. Both necessity decrees and partial vetoes must be submitted to a bicameral commission within ten days of their promulgation. Similarly, legislative delegation is only allowed within fixed terms, on specific topics, and according to the practice established by Congress. 45 In fact, before achieving constitutional status in 1994 (coupled with partial vetoes and partial promulgation of laws) necessity decrees had been used by the two presidents from each of the two major parties.

If it is further taken into consideration that elections were often irregular, then parties also underplayed this basic function. Therefore, the two main parties remained considerably under-institutionalized, although there were important differences between them. In effect, under-institutionalization was not so pronounced in the Radical Party as it was in Peronism, because the first had been built on the basis of a decentralized and relatively autonomous structure that managed to impose some checks to the central leadership, and, since early, had established internal elections for the nomination of candidates.

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