Public Letters and a Think Tank: Sharp’s Strategy to Conquer the People’s List

Yesterday afternoon, in assembly, the Town List addressed the presidential issue, but without taking definitions, and it only remained as an open issue to continue talking to the new political scene with Gabriel Boric as the winner of the presidential primaries of Approve Dignity and with the mayor of Valparaíso, Jorge Sharp, sending signals of that does not rule out getting into the presidential race.

Although it says that does not pursue a candidacyIt is not a mystery to anyone that the Buenos Aires mayor aspires to become the letter of the People’s List that surprised in the election of conventional to obtain 27 seats. After that overwhelming triumph, this movement decided in a congress on June 13 do not become a political party, but it does bring a candidate to the end of the year parliamentary and presidential elections.

Up to there they were silently working and looking at the independents who are gathering firms to present themselves, which already number about twenty. But the triumph of the Broad Front candidate, Gabriel Boric, brought more questions to this list, since although everyone assumes that a greater space is opened to occupy electorally on the left side with a presidential standard-bearer, not everyone agrees. There are some voices on the People’s List who believe that it is better to dedicate themselves conscientiously to women parliamentarians and miss this opportunity, while others think they should take this leap.

“Hopefully they would hurry, because there is hope that something will come out now,” says constituent Ivanna Olivares (D5), just as Giovanna Grandón (D12) reaffirms that this is the way, “in the assembly we decided that we would take candidates to the next election. That is all the information ”.

On the other hand, some constituents prefer to be more cautious, of course always speaking from their point of view and not from the complete List. Manuel Voldarsky (D10): “I think that you have to make that decision very cautiously, you don’t need to run or hurry, it is now necessary to work to achieve a constituent Parliament and match the field with the independents ”.

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He comments that although he would not rule out a presidential race, he believes that the task of presenting candidacies to Congress is titanic, since the signatures must be gathered to go as an independent and that is not an easy process. Meanwhile he project presented by FA and PC to reduce the requirements of independents has made no progress in Congress.

In addition, the constituent Loreto Vidal (D20) -also as a personal reflection- he makes the analogy with a person, pointing out that when a newborn is forced to walk, it ends up being damaged.

“With humility and wisdom we could recognize that if this social movement has a presidential claim, we should think that if we force the newborn to walk, not only will it not succeed, because physiologically it is not ready yet, and the worst that could happen is that by forcing it so much, it inevitably ends up damaging itself. Each thing in its own time, from my gaze, we first learn to walk and then give great races like the presidential ones ”.

A candidacy must be registered on August 23 and everyone already knows that after the primaries the race has already started. They are also clear in this movement that Boric does not represent them, since they consider him to be from the right and do not forget that with his vote he criminalized social protest, from which precisely this reference emerged.

Until now, in the meetings they have had, a profile of the candidate that would satisfy them has been outlined: they must not be linked to political parties, at least after the outbreak, be a woman, a feminist, an environmentalist and from the regions.

And although this profile Sharp only meets two requirements, it is the candidate that is configured as the closest. Another one that hangs around in the environment is the Mapuche Diego Ancalao, who has already received the support of the constituent of the People’s List Rodrigo Rojas, although it is not to everyone’s taste. “There is no rush to choose a presidential candidate, everything is quiet. Although none of the ones that are showing (better aspect), except Ancalao ”, comments Cristóbal Andrade (D6).

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Much more subtle, the conventional Alejandra Pérez (D9) specifies that there is still nothing concrete, “Sharp is a candidacy that is rising from the people, I can neither assure nor deny anything. The List has an assembly on Tuesdays ”. “For my part, this is an issue that will be defined today,” says Francisco Caamaño (D14).

Members of the People’s List They do not rule out that, facing the presidential definition that is pending, they begin to listen to interested parties such as Sharp to explore if they could join the political project.

Of course, the mayor of Valparaíso already has an bridge built in this world through his former collaborator and today a constituent of the Tania Madriaga People’s List, who, along with others 108 people, sign the letter in which the mayor of Valparaíso calls for the creation of a new “political-social actor of transformation”, which was read as a self-proclamation.

“This invitation should not put nervous but those who believe that they are enough by themselves to be able to make the changes. What the country requires are majorities and there the independent world and social movements have a lot to say, “added the mayor.

Rodrigo Ruiz, Madriaga’s partner and one of the signatories, admits that they have already appeared before some LDP representatives. In general, the conversations are led by Madriaga.

According to the anthropologist, and a member of Sharp’s political team, “The defeat of Jadue, the victory of Boric, leaves open a challenge for the independent world, which now has to talk, if it feels interpreted by these candidacies, or believes that it has to build another channel. The Broad Front (FA) triumphed yesterday and the FA is not the benchmark that interprets the independent spectrum ”.

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Ruiz clarifies that the letter is not a proclamation of Jorge Sharp as a presidential candidate: “It is sitting down to talk and there we go watching.”

Meanwhile, Sharp continues to work and install networks such as its think tank, Vía Porteña, which between June 25 and July 8 rheld a seminar aimed at elected mayors and mayors, “with democratic territorial transformation programs”, in which nine municipalities participated: Cauquenes, San Joaquín, Concón, Cerrillos, Tiltil, Casablanca, Curanilahue, San Antonio and Puerto Natales.

This center of thought, Ruiz points out, “would undoubtedly make itself available to an independent candidacy. One that emanates from TER or from any other related space (…). If Vía Porteña can develop participatory processes for the systematization of ideas, it could be a good contribution, and could contribute to programmatic issues and the construction of ideas ”.

Twenty people participate in Vía Porteña, some of whom are also members of Networked Territories (TER), collective platform that is one hundred percent in agreement with an eventual candidacy of Sharp. They wait for another – or another – independent to rise. That the mayor fulfill the commitments acquired in the campaign. May the mayoralty end with achievements.

Some of the theoretical referents of Via Portena are David Harvey, Mike Davis, Martha Harnecker and Henry Lefebvre. Saskia Sassen, Wendy Brown, Chantal Mouffe and Chilean feminist philosopher Alejandra Castillo. They also read Álvaro García Linera or Mario Garcés, in recent days, about the popular revolts in Chile in 1900.

The phrase Vía Porteña, the anthropologist acknowledges, is “a paraphrase of that phrase by Allende that indicated a Chilean-style democratic socialism. Third world. South American. Not a Soviet socialism. The Via Porteña is to take charge of the situated democratic transformation ”.

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