Without thinking, Sergio Massa says from his office on Avenida Libertador:
-I'll run for president.
After a week in which it was speculated with a "Lavagna 2019", the phrase can be confused with an affront. But not. Without raising or diminishing competition, Tigrense understands that the economist goes beyond the electoral dispute and that his role will be fundamental to "channel an alternative" to the government. "With Roberto, let's build a hope because here Macri failed, not Argentina," he says while sipping a cup of coffee.
The president guarantees that there is no other way.
-It's wrong. This road hurt the Argentines a lot. In the face of the path of adjustment, rate, and uncontrolled inflation, there is always another way.
-He mentioned the rate: do you propose concrete actions against the tax?
-Of course! The fight against this irrationality began in 2016 with a presentation against Aranguren and a letter to the president. We stated that the government had entered the operating room with a chainsaw. We take legal action. The Court orders him to go back and tell him that he must respect the principle of proportionality and rationality.
– That's what they did. I ask if they will do anything from now on.
-In Congress we will insist on the law stating that neither electricity nor water nor gas can increase more than wages. And in Justice let's try a for salty. We are going to the Court to apply the principle of rationality and proportionality. It is irrational because the increases are decoupled from the rest of the economy. And it is disproportionate because light increases by 1400% and wages by 180%.
-You proposed the "gender emergency." What it is?
-Argentina has to deconstruct from the male patriarchy to a society of equals. This deconstruction opens up more strongly the denunciations of women victims of violence. This is the century of women. And of the century of women, Argentina has to come out with equal rights between men and women. In Argentina, the wages of women for the same activity by men is 24% lower.
– But what concrete measures does it promote?
– The change in the Criminal Code is fundamental: the femicide must be perpetual. Rape must be punished with perpetual punishment because we have to be instructive to impose a system of penalties that generates the awareness that man's violence against women destroys society and destroys the family.
-What was the deconstruction of Sergio Massa himself?
– (smiles) More than a deconstruction there is an apprenticeship. I live in a house where the woman in the house has a lot of activity and lots of public policy building around this issue for years. As mayor in 2008, he raised the first charge of gender and family violence in the province of Buenos Aires. Did not exist. And that was not my merit. It was the merit of Malena, imposing on the agenda the theme that saved many women from very difficult situations. Today there are more than 70 women from the Tigre, who not only took the place of violence, but through a program we transformed them into entrepreneurs. Part of the women's fear of reporting has to do with the fact that the state does not have an instrument to protect it. For three years I have been raising a bill that is the 36-month pension, a bridge for women victims of gender violence and financed by an embargo that the state promotes on the inheritance of man. The government did not want to discuss this issue.
"Would you question the voluntary termination of pregnancy?"
– It will be on the agenda because it is a cross-cutting issue across all political forces and society as a whole.
-Are you going to run for president?
-I'm going to be a presidential candidate and I want to be the growth president of Argentina to get out of this failure.
-Lavagna will be a presidential candidate?
-Roberto, I think, is the most important lighthouse for those who believe in the development and growth of Argentina. When you look at the historical series of Argentina and … have you seen that there is a lot of talk in the last 50 years? … Roberto, Martín Redrado, José Ignacio de Mendiguren, Aldo Pignanelli, and myself during the period of social security, we placed a historical series, which crossed two governments, that of Duhalde and that of the first stage of Kirchner, which had a fiscal surplus , a trade surplus, a competitive exchange rate, which allowed Argentina to export strong, economic growth to important cups, employment growth, 900 thousand jobs in a year and a half, without inflation. Life gave me the luck to build a relationship not only political, but personal, almost familiar, with Roberto. I am lucky to share with Claudine (wife of Lavagna) and Malena things that are not political. With Marco Lavagna I share every day. With Roberto, I meet fortnightly for coffee. Sometimes to talk about the direction of the economy sometimes because it is important for me to learn from what he sees, and sometimes simply because we have a habit.
He did not answer the question.
– Are you going to run for president?
I think he's very important. And the most important thing he's doing today is putting his prestige to show that Argentina has an alternative.
-That makes me more waist than Messi.
– Applications, when it comes time to define candidates, we will define them. But the most important thing he is doing is helping us to show that in Argentina there are alternatives, that we can move on.
-Lavagna is your team?
"It's part of something much more important." It is part of the Argentineans who believe in national unity for development. We, and that we got up with De la Sota and Roberto in 2015, and that accompanied many Argentines, because at that time we won more than 5 million votes, we make a big deal. The next president, and no doubt I have clear and imbued in the skin, after traveling part of the country with the car and make contact with people, he will have to convene a grand deal for unity
"I promise because the idea of the Social Economic Council, the state policies, the Moncloa Argentina, are things that we have been raising with Roberto for many years. First the big deal, then the applications. It depends very much on the vocation of each one, of the desire, of the time, of the age, of the moment in which each one lives in familiar and professional terms.
"But will not he tell me he has not decided what he's going to do?"
– (laughs) I know what Roberto is going to do. But I will not be the one to say it. I have an ethical and professional obligation to respect Roberto the decision that he says what he will do. I'll tell you what I'm going to do.
"He met him this week."
Yes Every fifteen days we do that. We did on December 27, December 11, the day before yesterday …
"For what he tells me, I have to conclude that you will be a candidate, as he told me, and Lavagna will be responsible for some sort of Economic Council."
– (smiles) I do not work with hypotheses.
-Because if both candidates apply, they will have to compete in an intern.
-With Lavagna we will be part of the solution to the problems of Argentina.
– Can I infer then that the diffusion of photos of Lavagna with different politicians, like Pichetto or Lifschitz, are a bait to expand its space?
– I think it's a great contribution from him to help build an alternative.
-Alberto Fernandez said they are using to split the opposition vote.
-Roberto is much more than a choice. Simplifying it for the election issue is unnecessary. At some point, in 2016, we had lunch with Roberto, Graciela Camaño, "El Vasco", by Mendiguren, and in the afternoon Roberto made an interview. And it raises the concern about the indiscriminate opening of imports and tariffs. At that time, from another sector of politics, there was also something almost disqualifying against him. And I think time finally proved right for him. This is an insensitive and arrogant government, which does not understand that the adversary marks a path of hope and not a question of destruction.
"Farm said that Lavagna was the representative of the corporations.
They always associate Lavagna with Techint.
No … If you look at his history as a minister, it was very difficult with Techint. They also said about Vascon de Mendiguren. Here to disqualify you have to put a label and repeat it as a parrot. Society is tired of seeing politicians arguing over whether they join if they do not come together.
-But as you want to change this government, you want to know if the election wins, with whom you intend to change this government. Is Lifschitz in the plans?
-I know that Miguel has a vocation that we can unite in a great alternative.
Oh! And he wanted Martin to realize that he was hostage to a trap that is a political struggle and that he has much to contribute to Argentina.
"How about Sola, who was in your space and left?"
-Felipe, besides being able to have a different look, I am convinced that he was a great governor and the affection of a long time lived together.
Urtubey launched. Are you going to compete with him?
-Facundo Moyano, another who left the Renovador Front, said that he sees Urtubey more as a companion of Macri's plate than inside the Peronist space.
-I think Juan Manuel a very valuable leader, like Miguel Pichetto and Juan Schiaretti. I think they also have things to show. Each of us has to do his part. It is necessary to leave the disqualifying logic to move on to propositional logic. This government failed. He built ten very rich companies, those that sell light, gas and naphtha, and 25 million Argentines he impoverished because he took them out of pocket to win those companies and removed them from the consumer market. Not only lost the retiree against the ballot, but also lost the kiosquero, the grocer or the greengrocer, who sold to the retiree. That is why consumption fell, industrial activity fell …
– But with the separate Peronism you can win to change to modify this situation box describing?
-The most important thing is that on December 11 we have to call a big agreement for Argentina. You feel businessmen, workers, I think, because we have to recover a value system.
– Is there an agreement with Cristina Kirchner?
We are building an alternative.
Does this mean that it is an alternative to government and Kirchnerism?
I do not impose the limits, people impose them.
"But do you include it or not?"
"That's a blast to see if we make a titulite." Three elections ago I've been traveling a different path. I come clear, not what I say, what I do. Having an alternative means having a candidate who defeats Macri in the second round without losing. Was I clear? Because the coming Argentina is not built with neither nostalgia nor revenge.
– Thus, the formula proposed by Pablo Moyano, who is "President Cristina – Governor Massa" does not close …
"No, not at all. Closes me the formula proposed by Carlos Acuña (one of the leaders of the CGT, who leads him to the presidency).
"Although I do not want to be a gubernatorial candidate, I ask you about the province of Buenos Aires. He is accused of being condescending to Vidal.
-Not! We had a responsible attitude of opposition, which places firm limits. I told you at the beginning of the interview all the struggle we fought against the 2016 rate. When we started the indiscriminate imports that began to destroy the SMEs of La Matanza footwear, we asked them to declare the customs emergency and the Government went out to use pejorative qualifications for me.
-How do you evaluate Vidal's management?
– Besides the good will that can show a rule has to have a good team that shows the same will. I invite you to ask your readers to call you three ministers of the province.
"So there's merit to having a low profile."
-I believe there is a very high driver exposure and an inaction of those below. Tell me one thing you will remember from this Vidal government. A route, a school building plan, a hospital building plan. Nothing at all.
– For or against the split of the election?
– Besides the date, what I think is that now comes the moment in which we have to finish with the lists of lists, where the society elected a president and has a chef of intendant (by Martiniano Molina, in Quilmes). We need the unique ID. We need to encourage political reform. This government promised and failed to eliminate profits, promised and failed to keep football free, promised and failed to implement a political reform.
– We sanctioned a proposal of ours by Graciela Camaño. We have to change many things. Do the Deliberative Councils make sense today?
– Back to the unfolding
– I believe the discussion is not the division, but the electoral and legal system.
"Do not you see a purely electoral purpose behind the division discussion?"
-We, as a political force, are part of the Bicameral and from there a reform of the voting system has to leave.
-I mean, if there is bank reform, division.
– What bench is that there is reform in the electoral system of Argentina, not only in the province.
-Go again: bench breaking apart?
"The date is inconsequential; if you do not change the background, the other is secondary. Now, if you ask me if Vidal wants to take Macri's backpack, I do not know. And it's not a backpack problem. It seems to me that, in any case, most Argentines want a new government on December 11. And we, beyond the tactics, what we have to do is build together.
– For that Argentina it is necessary to make the Mercosur more flexible, as they agreed Macri and Bolsonaro?
-I'll take a more comprehensive look. The embassies of the world today have to be commercial offices that sell the Argentine work. We must end with the ambassadors who eat canapés and drink champagne and pass on the ambassadors who sell the Argentine work in the world. Mercosur is our first market. It's our first place. Argentina has 80% of its economy, which is an internal market and only 10% are exports. The Argentina we have to build is one that, instead of selling wheat, sells noodles. But this government is looking at the financial economy, the securities, the shares of the 20 Argentine companies listed in New York. And the real Argentine economy is the SME that fights against 70 interest rate points and against stifling fiscal pressure.
"Is Nicholas committed suicide or was he killed?"
(He pauses for a moment, takes a moment and takes a long sip of his second coffee in less than half an hour.) I do not have certainties. I do not even know the cause in detail. But I have a personal intuition that tells me they killed him. And I have a personal desire. That is what we have been able to do once and for all, that the investigation is resolved because Argentina already has too many brands open with a breath of impunity. Nisman is one, AMIA is another. I lived in my own flesh, I lived on the skin as part of the prefecture of the time acted with the behavior of the mafia (refers to the intelligence member of that force that came and stole at home during the administration of Cristina Kirchner). I lived in my house. I was two years old with my son sleeping in my bed.
"What do you think of Miracle Sala's sentence?"
"That if they tried the robberies, they would have to be arrested." We have to end this line of political prisoners. Those who tried have to go to jail. Let's end this lie, be they of the political color they are … Whoever worked in the civil service has to be arrested regardless of the political color, be it called Miracle Room or Calcaterra!
-Atention for the playlist that has spread on the networks, Arjona or rock & roll?
-A little bit and a little bit. Arjona is my romantic side. I got a soda thing in there. I will publish the Spotify list so that all doubts are removed. But I have a very strong brand of cumbia and quartet. I am from the suburbs and am from a middle class home, the son of a middle class immigrant. I like popular music.
– (Perhaps the long silence of the interview is delivered) Mmm … Tiger. With the heart placed, in addition, in this year God gives strength to the players, coaching staff and leaders to follow in the first place.
"I'll take leave with the following hypothesis. Lavagna comes and tells him that he will be a presidential candidate.
– (laughs) Is it a game?
– (Abruptly he gets serious) I do not play. Argentina is not a game. I chose a path, chose a responsibility, chose to lead a team to transform Argentina and this is not a game.
"Then suppose it's not a game." It is simply a hypothesis.
"Then I'll have coffee with him." I do not have a question of vanity. What I have is the conviction that I learned from my mistakes and failures. I know the state and Argentina very well, and I know you can put the energy to put it on your feet. And I'm going to run for president.