from Buenos Aires Province
Assumed office |
December 10, 2009
December 10, 1999 – December 10, 2003
Ricardo Luis Alfonsín
November 2, 1951
|Political party||Radical Civic Union|
|Mother||María Lorenza Barreneche|
|Alma mater||University of Buenos Aires|
Ricardo Luis Alfonsín (born November 2, 1951) is an Argentine lawyer, academic and politician prominent in the Radical Civic Union. His father, Raúl Alfonsín, was the President of Argentina from 1983 to 1989.
Ricardo Luis Alfonsín was born in Chascomús son of María Lorenza Barreneche and Raúl Alfonsín; the latter was at the time a local lawyer and councilman active in the centrist Radical Civic Union (UCR). Ricardo Alfonsín earned a degree in education at the Chascomús Teachers College, and taught civics in local secondary schools, later earning a law degree at the University of Buenos Aires.
He married Cecilia Plorutti, and the couple had four children during the 1980s; though his father had been elected president in 1983, they avoided involvement in politics at the time. He first actively entered politics in 1993, and was elected delegate to the UCR leadership convention, during which his father was returned to the party's presidency after being turned out in 1991. He first rose to elected office in 1999, as a Buenos Aires Provincial Deputy, and remained in the post until 2003. The UCR in tatters following the 2001 resignation of President Fernando de la Rúa, Alfonsín was named head of the party's foreign policy office following the end of his term in the legislature.
On September 7, 2004, his youngest daughter, Amparo, suffered a deep cut from broken glass at the parochial school she attended in Buenos Aires, and lost her life at age 15. The tragedy led Alfonsín to retire from politics for a time, though in 2007, he made a surprise bid for the office of Governor of Buenos Aires Province, naming veteran actor Luis Brandoni as his running mate. The move was unconventional because the UCR, on which ticket he ran, had endorsed independent candidate Roberto Lavagna in the 2007 presidential race, and Lavagna, in turn, backed Congressman Jorge Sarghini for governor. Ultimately, none of the three won their respective races.
Alfonsín lost his father on March 31, 2009, when three days of national mourning were declared. A month earlier, he formed an alliance with former fellow UCR lawmaker Margarita Stolbizer (who had established her own party, GEN) and accepted the second spot in the GEN/UCR party list ahead of the June 28, 2009 mid-term elections. The list came in third in the Province of Buenos Aires, though it secured enough votes to elect both to the Lower House of Congress, where they would be seated on December 10. As part of a compromise with the ruling Front for Victory caucus (representing Kirchnerism), the latter would retain the Presidency of the Lower House, and Alfonsín was elected 1st Vice President of the body on December 4.
Alfonsín clinched his party's nomination for the 2011 presidential elections when Senator Ernesto Sanz withdrew on April 28. The Civic and Social Agreement alliance with GEN and the Socialist Party was broken in June, so he endorsed the Federal Peronism candidate Francisco de Narváez for Governor of Buenos Aires and appointed former Central Bank President Javier González Fraga as running mate. They placed third with 11% of the vote.
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