Javier Milei, a libertarian candidate who has advocated for the elimination of the central bank and spoken favorably of Bitcoin (BTC), won the primary presidential election in Argentina.
With 90% of the vote counted, Milei – of the "La Libertad Avanza" (Freedom Advances) party – had 30.5% of the votes versus candidates from "Juntos por el Cambio" (Together for Change) and "Unidos por la Patria" (United for the Homeland), who received 28% and 27%, respectively.
Pre-election polls suggested Milei would finish no higher than third in today’s vote.
"The central bank is a scam, a mechanism by which politicians cheat the good people with inflationary tax,” Milei has previously argued. Regarding Bitcoin, he said that it "represents the return of money to its original creator, the private sector.”
While having a favorable attitude towards the crypto, Milei has not advocated for Bitcoin’s use as legal tender within Argentina (similar to El Salvador). Instead, Milei has called for a “dollarization” of the economy, which currently is dealing with a triple-digit rate of inflation.
With no candidate likely to obtain more than 45% in today’s polling, a general election among the winner for each party will be held in October. If no one receives 45% in that vote, a final runoff vote will be held in November.
UPDATE (Aug. 14, 10:50 UTC): Updates headline and body with the confirmation of Milei's win.
The leader in news and information on cryptocurrency, digital assets and the future of money, CoinDesk is an award-winning media outlet that strives for the highest journalistic standards and abides by a strict set of editorial policies. In November 2023, CoinDesk was acquired by Bullish group, owner of Bullish, a regulated, institutional digital assets exchange. Bullish group is majority owned by Block.one; both groups have interests in a variety of blockchain and digital asset businesses and significant holdings of digital assets, including bitcoin. CoinDesk operates as an independent subsidiary, and an editorial committee, chaired by a former editor-in-chief of The Wall Street Journal, is being formed to support journalistic integrity.