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Ernesto Sanz

040311 - Santiago O’Donnell - Como Mauricio Macri, Ernesto Sanz pidió un SOS - Página/12
Un cable filtrado por Wikileaks revela que el senador mendocino reclamó “mensajes más duros”. Estenssoro, moderada.


En agosto del 2008 el hoy precandidato del radicalismo Ernesto Sanz les pidió a funcionarios estadounidenses que aumentasen sus críticas al gobierno de Cristina Kirchner, señala un cable diplomático filtrado por Wikileaks al que tuvo acceso Página/12.

(Ver:
Wikileaks revela: ¿Argentinos informantes de la embajada de Estados Unidos?)

Sanz hizo su reclamo ante un funcionario del Congreso norteamericano y otro del Departamento de Estado que visitaban la
Argentina, además del entonces embajador Earl Anthony Wayne. Al igual que le ocurriría a Mauricio Macri seis meses más tarde cuando pidió lo mismo en un almuerzo en la embajada, el pedido de Sanz fue rechazado.

El enviado del Departamento de Estado, Bruce Friedman, contestó con diplomacia que “a todas las partes” les convenía que
Argentina y Estados Unidos se llevaran bien. El funcionario del Congreso Carl Meacham fue más claro todavía. Sin demasiada sutileza, le hizo saber al senador mendocino que su pedido de intervención del gobierno estadounidense en la política argentina, como si fuera un partido, francamente le parecía un exceso.

“Sanz presionó por un rol más asertivo, tanto de la embajada como de influyentes inversores estadounidenses, pidiendo que mandemos mensajes más duros al gobierno de Kirchner. Los críticos de la oposición –dijo– se sienten aislados al criticar las políticas peligrosas o irracionales del Gobierno cuando jugadores internacionales clave están en silencio”, dice el cable.

Primero llegó la respuesta conciliadora del funcionario del Departamento de Estado: “(El funcionario) Friedman enfatizó que el gobierno de Estados Unidos buscaba sostener (la relación) y construir sobre los aspectos positivos de la relación
Argentina-Estados Unidos y que todas las partes se beneficiarían con más vínculos entre los gobiernos de los dos países”, dice el cable.

El funcionario del Congreso fue más directo. Simplemente le explicó al líder radical que su estrategia no iba a funcionar.

“Meacham también le advirtió a Sanz que un rol de
Estados Unidos demasiado fuerte fácilmente puede provocar una reacción y socavar las posiciones que apoyamos”, dice el cable.

De la reunión entre Sanz y los enviados estadounidenses también participó la senadora de la Coalición Cívica María Eugenia Estenssoro quien, a diferencia del precandidato presidencial, no le pidió intervención alguna a la embajada. Al contrario, dijo que había que ser cuidadosos con las críticas.

“A Estenssoro le preocupa que con la frágil historia de las experiencias de gobierno, críticas abiertas al Ejecutivo muchas veces llevaban al colapso de un gobierno, algo que la mayoría de los miembros de la oposición ya no quieren ver”, dice el cable firmado por el embajador Earl Anthony Wayne.

Si bien Estenssoro criticó el estilo del Gobierno y celebró el voto no positivo de Cobos como el fin de la “hegemonía” kirchnerista, la senadora sonó moderada en comparación con su par radical, quien se despachó así: “Sanz argumentó que el gobierno de Kirchner iba derecho a la chavización hasta que fue descarrilado por la crisis agrícola”.

También dijo que el voto no positivo de Cobos sobre las retenciones había sido “un acto racional dentro de un gobierno irracional”.

El cable incluye dos entrevistas más de la comitiva con senadores argentinos, una con el presidente provisional del Senado, José Pampuro, y otra con los senadores oficialistas Miguel Pichetto y Guillermo Jenefes.

Jenefes y Pichetto defendieron las políticas del Gobierno.

En cuanto a Pampuro, “criticó la incapacidad del Gobierno para advertir los intereses comunes del sector agrario contra las retenciones”. Pampuro agregó, según el cable diplomático, que “el Gobierno no tuvo en cuenta la necesidad de muchos senadores de responder favorablemente a provincias con predominio agrícola”. Aludió a que muchos de esos senadores son ex gobernadores. “También planteó la necesidad de la administración Kirchner de desarrollar un equipo económico capaz de manejar el gasto público, la inflación, los subsidios y las obligaciones de la deuda.” En términos internos, recomendó no subestimar la habilidad del ex presidente Eduardo Duhalde para el armado político, pero no le adjudicó chance alguna de resurgir con fuerza.

“Una vez más, Pampuro fue sorprendentemente franco con nosotros al hacer su evaluación privada de la performance de los Kirchner, lo cual indica el grado de descontento entre los líderes partidarios tradicionales sobre los pasos que han tomado los Kirchner”, cierra el despacho, en aquel lejano 2008.
 


Ernesto Sanz, de la Unión Cívica Radical de Argentina

Los Cables

29 de agosto del 2008
C O N F I D E N T I A L BUENOS AIRES 001215
SIPDIS
E.O. 12958: DECL: 08/29/2018
TAGS: PREL, PGOV, ECON, EFIN, EINV, PINR, AR
SUBJECT: ARGENTINE SENATORS SEE OPPORTUNITY AND RISKS IN NEW POLITICAL LANDSCAPE
REF: (A) BUENOS AIRES 1115 (B) BUENOS AIRES 1038 (C)
BUENOS AIRES 0800
Classified By: Ambassador E. Anthony Wayne for reason 1.4 (b) & (d).

1. (U) Summary: Argentine Senate president Pampuro again privately criticized the government’s handling of the agricultural sector crisis, while government and opposition senators in three separate meetings described a changed political landscape in Argentina to visiting SFRC Professional Staff Member Meacham August 5-7. Senators from both camps anticipated new opportunities for a more assertive legislative role following President Kirchner’s defeat on agricultural export taxes. The first couple’s declining poll numbers and rising public concerns over issues like inflation had changed the dynamic for the opposition, creating also rifts within Peronism and emboldening moderate Peronists concerned about the assertion of excessive presidential power to speak up. The opposition Senators expressed concern, however, that President Kirchner and her hard-line advisors could resort to more radical and polarizing policies in an attempt to recover power, with dangerous consequences for Argentine democracy. End Summary.

2. (U) Visiting Senate Foreign Relations Committee Professional Staff Member Carl Meacham and State WHA/BSC Deputy Director Bruce Friedman participated in three separate meetings August 5-7 with Senate President Pro Tempore Jose Pampuro of the governing Peronist-led Victory Front coalition (FPV), with FPV Senators Miguel Pichetto and Guillermo Jenefes, and with two opposition members of the Senate Friendship Committee, Maria Eugenia Estenssoro of the Civil Coalition (CC) and Ernesto Sanz of the Radical Civic Union (UCR). The Ambassador participated in the meeting with Senate President Pampuro.

A Ruling Coalition Critique
---------------------------

3. © Senator Pampuro, the Senate’s President Pro Tempore and former Defense Minister under President Nestor Kirchner, was again critical of the GoA’s mismanagement of the agricultural export tax crisis (as he was in his discussion with Ambassador reported reftel B). Pampuro criticized President Cristina Kirchner’s (CFK) administration for its inability to foresee the agricultural sector’s common interests against the export taxes. Furthermore, he said, the administration did not account for many senators’ need to respond favorably to predominantly agricultural provinces. Pampuro said that the most telling thing about the Senate vote was that all former governors in the Senate (i.e. those with executive experience) voted against the government bill, including Vice President Cobos. He also stressed the need for the Kirchner administration to develop an economic team capable of handling public spending, inflation, subsidies, and debt obligations.

4. © In response to questions from Meacham regarding the strength of former President Eduardo Duhalde in Argentine politics, Pampuro brushed aside the notion of Duhalde reemerging as a leading political figure. However, he did concede that Duhalde retained the ability to build a national political force and cultivate prominent politicians for the presidency.

5. © In a separate meeting with StaffDel Meacham, Senators Pichetto and Jenefes voiced support for CFK, noting that despite the ag crisis she is still firmly in control of the government. They both criticized Cobos, asserting that no U.S. president would have tolerated a dissenting vote from his vice president. Nevertheless, Pichetto added, many in Argentina supported the agricultural sector and broader participation in government. The time for concentrated executive power, though necessary under Nestor Kirchner’s tenure, had passed. Jenefes echoed these views and voiced his expectation that CFK will open up the consultative process with Congress.

6. © Pichetto spoke pointedly about the weakness of Congress. One of Argentina’s principal obstacles to balanced government, he said, is the lack of a “congressional culture.” Argentina had experienced too many dissolutions of congress, which was still developing as an institution. Nor did it enjoy broad respect and support in society.

7. © Jenefes expressed support for stronger ties between the U.S. and Argentina, saying that he was not in favor of a ”Venezuelan-Argentine axis.” In his view, Brazil was Argentina’s most important partner; Pichetto added that Argentina needed to work with Brazil toward greater integration into the world economy. Pichetto also argued that the U.S. advocated but did not always practice free trade.

The Senate Opposition: Cautiously Optimistic but Concerned
--------------------------------------------- -------------
 


María Eugenia Estenssoro, de la Unión Cívica Radical de Argentina

8. © Senators Estenssoro and Sanz were in agreement that the prolonged GoA conflict with the agricultural sector and Vice President Cobo’s tie-breaking vote against the government agricultural export tax had broken what Estenssoro termed the Kirchners’ “hegemony.” Opposition legislators had more standing, and dissenters within the Peronist Party (PJ) were speaking up. Asked by Meacham about Cobos’ future role, both Senators voiced uncertainty. Sanz noted that Cobos was showing additional small signs of independence, perhaps the beginning of a prolonged effort to separate himself from the Kirchner line. Sanz called Cobos’ vote a “rational act from within an irrational government.” Sanz contended that the Kirchner government was headed toward “Chavization” until derailed by the crisis with agriculture.

9. © Estenssoro believed that the agricultural crisis had brought to the surface other popular concerns about the Kirchners’ ruling style, in particular its nascent authoritarian impulses and the GoA’s apparent lack of will or ability to address both growing inflation and its lack of credibility in reporting low-ball “official” inflation statistics.

10. (SBU) Pressed by Meacham as to why the Argentine Congress or judicial system did not demand greater accountability of INDEC (the national statistics agency reporting on inflation) or other executive agencies violating the law, Estenssoro and Sanz described a tradition of legislative passivity and politicized justice. With the decline of the President’s popularity, Sanz opined, judges might begin to be more aggressive about executive branch malfeasance. On Congress’s role, Estenssoro worried that, with Argentina’s fragile governance history, forceful questioning of the executive had often meant the collapse of a government, something that most opposition members did not want to see at the present time. Estenssoro, with Sanz appearing to agree, said that they wanted CFK to fulfill her full term in office. Still, despite the risks, both Senators appeared to believe that the crisis and its aftermath could herald a new chapter of more effective and assertive legislative initiative.

11. (SBU) Sanz pressed for a more assertive role both by the Embassy and by influential U.S. investors, asking that we deliver tougher messages to the Kirchner government. Opposition critics, he said, felt isolated in criticizing irrational or dangerous government policies when key foreign players were silent. WHA/BSC Deputy Friedman emphasized that the USG sought to sustain and build on positive aspects of the U.S.-Argentina relationship and that all sides served to benefit from more positive USG ties with the Government. Meacham also cautioned Sanz that too strong a U.S. role could easily provoke a reaction and undermine those positions we pushed.

12. (SBU) Sanz and particularly Estenssoro expressed a strong interest in the current situation in the United States, both economic and political. Staff Member Meacham offered an overview of the U.S. electoral process, something the Senators clearly valued. Both expressed an interest in seeing an aspect of the upcoming electoral cycle, even the party conventions (which they acknowledged might be coming up too quickly for their own participation). Estenssoro, who graduated from Smith College in Massachusetts and Columbia University’s graduate school, plans to be in the United States later in the year.

13. (SBU) Comment: Once again, Pampuro was surprisingly frank with us in his private assessment of the Kirchners’ performance, indicating the extent of misgivings among traditional Peronist party leaders about steps taken by the Kirchners. End Comment.

14. (SBU) Staffdel Meacham and WHA/BSC Deputy Director Bruce Friedman were unable to clear this cable before departure.

WAYNE


 

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