“We have to go out and tell the management, everything we did, and show where we are going.” With a harangue with which he tried raise the morale of your troops ahead of the primaries, Alberto Fernández opened the game in the first Cabinet meeting that he led since he took office. President did not allude to the scandal in which his government is immersed due to the meetings in the Quinta de Olivos in which he participated and neither of the ministers put the issue on the table: the idea, after all, was to use the meeting as the first stage to “turn the page” as defined by one of the present, after the most difficult week of the head of state.
Although the Government does not hide that the issue of the visits in Olivos affected the roadmap drawn up for the campaign and the demeanor of the officials is very different from that which was warned after the closing of lists, the climate around the Museum of the Bicentennial was “very good.”
“It did us good to get together, review where we are going and, above all, focus on the priorities that as a government we must have for this new stage post-pandemic ”, one of those present at the meeting confided to this newspaper, whose sole public spokesperson was the Chief of Staff, Santiago Cafiero. In the midst of a strong secrecy, most of those present at the meeting chose to avoid giving details even under the breath. “Santiago has already spoken, we are not going to add anything,” was the premise that they launched from the Presidency.
“We can not stay in a mistake, about which the President has already admitted and apologized, “said a minister who swears that the Olivos scandal was not discussed.
The strategy, in that sense, was to close the chapter: “The President has already spoken, detailed, and we did not find more topics to add,” Cafiero replied when asked if there were more meetings.
As he could know Clarion, in his harangue the President stated that “much was done taking into account the context of the pandemic”And raised the need for that the ministers “defend the management” and help refresh people “the country that (Mauricio) Macri left.”
“I saw the President very well, focused on what is coming and with great expectation that in the election people will give us a boost,” described another source who was in the basement of Casa Rosada.
There was time for comment on the polls that reached the government’s campaign strategists. “It is a very polarized society, the vast majority have the decision made. In some focuses, there is apathy and dissatisfaction with the political leadership, but the polls do not show an impact on the intention to vote ”, was the balance at the end of the meeting.
Publicly, Cafiero stated that the idea was “to give the management and political guidelines” in the final stretch before the primaries. After showing twice with Cristina in Buenos Aires territory in recent days, the President, in turn, anticipated a tour of the Interior for next week (Catamarca, La Pampa and San Juan, would be his destination) with the aim of intensifying his movements to show that the Government is promoting a federal project.
With the sole absence of the Minister of Health, Carla Vizzotti, on tour in Russia, and the debut before his peers of Juan Zabaleta (Social Development) and Jorge Taiana (Defense), in addition to the members of the Cabinet were the secretaries Julio Vitobello (Presidency), Juan Pablo Biondi (Communication and Press), Gustavo Beliz (Strategic Affairs) and Vilma Ibarra (Legal and Technical), part of the circle closest to Fernández, who was harshly questioned in recent weeks by Kirchnerism. Without referring to any of them, Cafiero assured that “there will be no changes in the Cabinet.”
At the meeting, Fernández had to evacuate inquiries from the ministers regarding the management roadmap: The Olivos affair left several measures pending that officials seek to capitalize, avoiding the electoral law, which since Wednesday prohibits management actions “that expressly promote or discourage the winning of the vote in favor of any of the candidates.” In this sense, the order of the Casa Rosada is to avoid breaches that open new fronts. “Everything within the law,” was the request.
Meanwhile, in some ministries they began to work on the outline of the Budget 2022 that the Government plans to present next month. “It will be the post-pandemic budget, which has to reflect the recovery,” stressed the coordinating minister.