Javier Milei, a rising populist star in Argentina, believes that climate change is a lie, the sale of human organs should be legal, and sex education is a ploy to destroy the family. He's a standard U.S. Republican. His fiery speeches and courting of outrage has led to his popularity amongst the young and old. Those who yearn for change and have no answers themselves are falling for the seductive sirens call of something different. Regardless of what that difference may be.
Milei has refused COVID vaccinations, uses a fraying mop as a hair piece, and describes himself as 'lion'. He rose to fame for his on air boasts of sexual prowess which have surprisingly managed to peel away support from the conservative former president Mauricio Macri. After winning 17% of the vote in Argentina's capital city Buenos Aires, he managed a historical feat; he made third parties a viable option. Despite his claims of libertarianism, his rhetorical style and flair for violence is reminiscent of a Trump style fascism. In fact, Milei is a vocal supporter of Donald Trump, who surrendered himself to Fulton County jail this past Thursday, and is running a campaign reminiscent of the former President. Like Trump, his violent streak was notable even before his election. A celebration of his was interrupted by his bodyguards flashily drawing their weapons at a heckler.
Like an American Republican, he's promoting gun ownership and is deregulating all laws that obstruct ownership of weapons to create a new legal market. He wants to take Argentina off the Peso and adopt the US dollar as their official currency. He has stated that if he were to win his allies would be the US and Israel with explicit promises to move the Argentinian embassy to Jerusalem, following in Trump's footsteps. He has endorsements from Brazil's Jair Bolsanaro who had a similar anti-left pro-fascist platform.
Argentina is struggling with hyperinflation and a failing currency. The far right promises of being 'tough on crime' and promising any form of change are like crack to the desperate and suffering. His rock star like popularity is a worrying indicator of things to come.
Milei hasn't been elected yet. However, he recently won his primary with the biggest share of votes and the election is just around the corner in October. The voting 69% of the country polls at giving Milei 30% of the vote, beating out his opposition and forecasting him to take power. However, in order to win the vote in October, Milei needs a 15% increase in vote to reach the 45% threshold. Otherwise, a candidate needs a 40% share with a 10 point lead above their opponents. If these conditions aren't hit, there will be a runoff election in November between the top two. Milei is still favored to win.