Pro-Bitcoin Javier Milei trails as Argentina’s presidential election goes to run-off

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Pro-Bitcoin (BTC) presidential candidate Javier Milei failed to secure victory in the first round of the Argentine presidential election and is now set to face off against his rivals in a Nov. 19 run-off vote.

On Oct. 23, election results provided by Bloomberg show with over 90% of the vote counted —  economy minister Sergio Massa was in the lead with over 36% support, while Milei trailed at just over 30% of the votes.

The presidential hopefuls needed 45% of votes or 40% with a lead of 10 percentage points to have outright won the presidency.

Argentina-wide results as of Oct. 23, 1:00 AM UTC with over 90% of the vote counted. Source: Bloomberg

The result could be seen as unexpected as Milei won the most votes in the country’s primary presidential election in August capturing around 30% of the vote, which initially put him as the presidential frontrunner.

Milei calls himself an anarcho-capitalist, has rallied to slash the size of the government and abolish Argentina’s central bank claiming it’s a scam. He also plans to ditch the Argentinian peso for the U.S. dollar, mirroring the Bitcoin-friendly El Salvador.

Milei’s Liberty Advances (La Libertad Avanza) coalition has been described as anywhere between libertarian and far-right populist.

Related: Bitcoin soars in Argentina as Javier Milei wins presidential primary

He has also ocalled Bitcoin a reaction against “central bank scammers” and claimed fiat currency allows politicians to scam Argentines with inflation.

Massa, on the other hand, has pledged to launch a central bank digital currency (CBDC) if elected to “solve” Argentina’s long-lasting inflation crisis and has squashed the idea of adopting the dollar.

The cote comes amid 40% of Argentines facing poverty and tiring of the country’s mounting debt crisis. Annual inflation is also closing in on 140%.

Argentina will again head to the polls on Nov. 19. The candidate with the most votes will win the presidency for a four-year term.

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