Officially: República Argentina.
Seat of government: Buenos Aires.
Status: Democratic.
Structure: The president is elected directly. The legislature (Congreso) comprises the Cámara de Diputados, elected in the provinces, modified by proportional representation, and the Senado, elected by party in the provinces with each represented equally.
Chief governing party: Cambiemos.
Head of government: Mauricio Macri, president.
Chief legislative party: Frente para la Victoria, part of the Peronista Partido Justicialista.
Assessment: Democratic but unstable, particularly in economic matters. The latest period of Peronista dominance, led by the Kirchners, at least ended notorious volatility at the presidential level. The 2003 presidential election would have required a runoff between two Peronistas, but former president Carlos Ménem (1989-99), trailing badly in polls, withdrew, and Néstor Kirchner became president (2003-7). He took a strong stand against the former military régime and its Guerra Sucia, arresting tens of officers for trial, and successfully pressing Congress for an end to their amnesty. In 2005 congressional elections, Kirchner’s supporters won a plurality in the lower house and a majority in the upper house. In 2007, Kirchner’s wife, Cristina Fernández (2007-15), was elected to succeed him; she was reelected in a first-round victory in 2011. While claims to the Falkland Islands are a constant in domestic politics, Fernández fetishized the claim. In 2015, the Peronista reign finally ended, with Macri defeating Daniel Scioli of the PJ in a runoff. The FPV, however, still won a majority in both houses of Congress.
FH: 2-2, free. Econ: 6.63 (56), flawed democracy.
Updated: 2016 March 29.