Mexican far-left President Andrés Manuel López Obrador (AMLO) claimed on Tuesday that the election of libertarian economist Javier Milei as president of Argentina was an “own goal” for the South American nation.
“To put it in a word, with all due respect, it was an own-goal. And I do not agree, although I respect the decision of the people, with right-wing governments,” López Obrador said on Tuesday during a press conference. “I do not agree with classist, racist governments. I do not agree with the hypocrisy that characterizes the right wing in the world.”
López Obrador did not clarify if he believes Milei is personally a racist, nor provide any evidence for using the epithet against the president-elect. He also did not clarify if he meant to call Milei a racist or “right-wing governments” in general.
Milei, who will take office on December 10, was elected on Sunday, defeating the outgoing leftist government’s candidate, current Economy Minister Sergio Massa. Milei won the election by nearly 12 percentage points, soundly surpassing the slight lead that most polls were giving him prior to the vote . The outgoing Kirchnerist government has ruled over Argentina for 16 out of the past 20 years, having previously lost the presidency only to Mauricio Macri between 2015 and 2019.
The election occurred at a critical time for Argentina, as the South American nation continues to suffer through a severe economic meltdown marked by an over 140 percent inflation rate, rising poverty, and virtually no foreign reserves left.
Milei’s successful presidential campaign was centered around fixing Argentina’s ruined economy, significantly streamlining the government, cutting down public spending, and replacing the crumbling Argentine peso with the U.S. dollar as a means to stop inflation, a move that other countries in the region have successfully implemented. His campaign also included socially conservative subjects such as a strong stance against abortion and gender ideology in schools.
WATCH: Libertarian? Populist? What Argentina’s New Chainsaw-Wielding President Javier Milei Believes
Frances Martel / Breitbart News
López Obrador claimed that there is “no risk” of a far-right government coming to power in Mexico after his administration ends.
“Here we do not have that risk. There is nothing to fear. The people of Mexico are very aware; they are among the most politicized people in the world,” he said.
The Mexican far-left president also stated during his press conference that although he respected Argentina’s electoral choice, he considers that a right-wing government will not help the South American nation, as, in his opinion, it is a type of government that “only favors minorities, are defenders of conservatism and are employees of the oligarchy.”
López Obrador went on to compare the Argentine president-elect to dictators Jorge Rafael Videla, Francisco Franco, and Augusto Pinochet, claiming, without providing evidence, that Milei has the same “thinking.”
“He [Milei] has that thinking,” López Obrador said.”He has expressed it and we are respectful of the people, of the decision they made, but we draw our line with that policy.”
López Obrador’s unfounded accusations against Milei echoed those espoused by Venezuela’s socialist dictator Nicolás Maduro on Monday. Maduro publicly accused Milei, an ardent and vocal student of Judaism, of being a “neo-Nazi,” claiming that he wants to “continue” Videla’s, Pinochet’s, and Uruguay’s military dictatorship.
Prior to Sunday’s election, López Obrador accused Milei of being a “fascist conservative” due to past criticisms and comments issued by Milei against Pope Francis. Milei and Pope Francis held a “pleasant” telephone conversation on Tuesday, with Pope Francis reportedly telling Milei that he must have “courage and wisdom” to face this new stage of Argentina.
WATCH — LEGENDARY: This Is Argentina’s Chainsaw-Wielding, Anti-Establishment New President
Javier Milei via Storyful
López Obrador expressed that, although “it is already open and notorious that we do not agree with those who support an authoritarian, privatizing, racist, classist policy,” Mexico has no plans to cut relations with Argentina.
“We are not going to break relations with Argentina. A country, a nation, is not only its government. And the people of Argentina and the people of Mexico had ties of friendship and solidarity in very difficult times, precisely when the right wing imposed itself even with the use of arms militarizing Argentina. Many, many Argentines were protected in Mexico,” he said.
Christian K. Caruzo is a Venezuelan writer and documents life under socialism. You can follow him on Twitter here.