The government of Javier Milei suffered a serious setback this Tuesday before the Court, which annulled as “unconstitutional” the entire chapter of the labor reform launched in December through the Decree of Necessity and Urgency (DNU).
The issue was one of “significant specific debate and decision in the Legislative Branch,” said the National Chamber of Labor’s appeals court. The Argentine government is planning an insistence and appeal to the Supreme Court of Justice, even if, for practical purposes, the labor reform was invalid.
The judicial presentation was made by the General Confederation of Labor (CGT), the main Argentine trade union center, and has a clear Peronist affiliation. The labor court agreed for the first time on January 3 with the CGT, which agreed with his position for the second time involving the Chamber.
The appeals court pointed out that there was no “obstacle” for Congress to meet in December, when Milei signed the DNU, so the requirements of necessity and urgency are not proven.
“Before the date of entry into force of DNU 70/2023, the legislative body was convened, in office, and with powers to examine the content of the reforms promoted by said DNU,” said the three judges of the Chamber in a unanimous ruling.
Labor reform refers to reducing the power of unions, a true corporation that conditions all governments, as well as compensation and specific labor rights to, according to the government, promote productive activity.
The ultraliberal Milei, who assumed government on December 10 after four years as a Peronist Alberto Fernandez in the Casa Rosada, was in the first stages of his government two obstacles of different nature.
The CGT brought together the discontent of the essentially Peronist and left-wing sectors based on the strong devaluation of the peso and the very high inflation. On the 24th of this month, he launched a general strike, only 44 days after the new government took office. In the four years of Fernández’s government, the CGT did not stage any general strikes.
Another brake found by Milei is in the non-Peronist, fragmented opposition, which has shown itself to be a skilled negotiator to put limits on the Congress of the “Munibus Law,” presented a week after the DNU.
On December 20, Milei signed a DNU that included 366 measurements over 80 pages. The DNU is “progressing against some of the most powerful lobbies in Argentina, which cannot help but be surprised by the unfathomable impact of many measures in disparate sectors,” La Nacin said at the time.
Within steps This includes the recovery of price controls in the Argentine economy, the flexibility of the labor regime, the opening of the privatization of public companies, and the recovery of the rent law, which has been agreed upon in pesos, dollars, euros, or any other currency of your choice.
A week ago, MIlei sent to Congress a mega bill aimed at making the country the most liberal country in Latin America. It gives superpowers to the head of state and opts for a strong hand in security matters.
The project, called “Law of Bases and Starting Points for the Freedom of Argentines,” consists of 664 articles spread over 351 pages. The pompous name plays on the “basis and starting points for the organization of the Republic of Argentina,” which liberal Juan Bautista Alberdi wrote in the first half of the 19th century and which served as the ideological substrate for the National Constitution of 1853/1860, which was reformed in 1994.
Guillermo Francos, the Minister of the Interior, went to Congress to present to the president of the Chamber of Deputies, Martin Menem, the big project, kept in a wooden box with national colors.
The doubt at the time was If Milei really intended to achieve everything she proposed or further than the negotiation can imagine. Let’s not forget that it has 38 deputies out of 257 and seven senators out of 72.
The passing of the weeks made it clear that the concept of the “law of Mamuschka” or “Russian grimace” is true: Milei’s government included many issues, and differed so much in their importance and urgency, that in the negotiations it surrendered the chapters of the law, although preserving the essence. The final concession was the withdrawal of the entire chapter aimed at tax and financial reform, in addition to reducing the temporal scope of the super powers.
The Chamber of Deputies is scheduled to begin the debate on the “Mnibus Law” this Wednesday, in a session that promises to be a marathon.