Despite Victory Front (FpV) presidential candidate Scioli’s announcement last week that reaching an agreement with the holdouts was “not a priority,” Maurice Closs — Misiones Province governor and Scioli’s pick to be Minister of Sport and Tourism in (what he hopes to be) his new cabinet — has recently announced that he wants to pay off these same vultures and settle up with them once and for all.
He joins Juan Manuel Urtubey — Salta Province governor and another potential player in Scioli’s cabinet — who posited a similarly pro-vulture stance earlier this month.
“We all want to straighten things out with everyone,” said Closs, “we do not want to have any problems in accessing credit,” he went on.
So, when you say “we all want,” Closs, are you sure Scioli, Kicillof and Zannini agree?
The Kirchnerites have always opposed negotiation with the holdouts, considering debt to be a matter of national sovereignty — not ground on which to be hounded by external forces. So these opinions from Kirchnerite associates — Closs is a member of the Front for the Renewal of Concord Party, allied with the FpV, and Urtubey is a member of the Judicialist Party — have caused quite a stir.
Economy Minister Axel Kicillof had some fun synonyms for Urtubey’s views on the holdout situation and he shared some of them in a dialogue with Nacional Rock Radio — take “misunderstanding,” “ignorance” and “misinterpretation,” for example.
And I’m sure he would say the same about Closs’ latest statement.
Likewise, Scioli, in his speech against an agreement with the vultures a few days ago, stated, “[reaching an agreement with the holdouts] is not a priority in my agenda.”
“It’s not what Macri says — that if we don’t hurry up and pay these groups there will be grave consequences for the economy.”
But Closs and Urtubey are convinced that paying the vultures is the way forwards, with the former claiming that this is the only way Argentina will be able to access international markets and the latter stating that this refusal to agree with the holdouts has fostered a shoddy reputation for the nation.
They see these elections as an opportunity to sort out this ever-lasting issue of sovereign debt once and for all, with Closs recently stating, “First we have to win the elections on the 25 October and then we have to work on this matter seriously.”
I’m not so sure the rest of the Kirchnerite clan would agree.