Argentina’s Rabbi Sergio Bergman won the midterm congressional primary elections, his first national test for a seat in the country’s Parliament.
Bergman, who currently serves as a Buenos Aires city lawmaker for the center-right PRO Party, was the candidate who received the most votes for the lower house of the National Parliament in Sunday’s poll, receiving 27.5 percent of the votes. He was followed by the Peronist candidate Juan Cabandie with 18.9 percent.
Though the election was a primary, there was no opposition within each party, so the referendum is a harbinger of the October 27 midterm elections. In Buenos Aires city, the PRO Party is one of the most prominent parties running against the national Peronist government lead by Cristina Fernandez de Kirchner.
The rabbi, a member of the Buenos Aires municipal Legislature, will lead the ticket for the center-right PRO Party in Argentina’s national elections as its candidate for the National Lower house. He is the first rabbi to lead a national ticket in Argentina.
Bergman, the senior rabbi of the traditional Congregacion Israelita Argentina, is the founder of Active Memory, a group that demonstrated every Monday for a decade seeking justice for the victims of the 1994 bombing of the AMIA Jewish center in Buenos Aires.JTA