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Hermes Binner

Hermes Juan Binner is an Argentine medical doctor and a politician. He is the governor of Santa Fe since 11 December 2007. Binner ya es el primer gobernador socialista del pais. Rosario3, 11 December 2007. Binner is the first Socialist to become the governor of an Argentine province, and the first non-Justicialist to rule Santa Fe since 1983. Gano Binner y el socialismo saco al PJ de la Gobernacion de Santa Fe, Clarin, 3 September 2007

Binner was previously a Deputy of the Civic and Social Progressive Front, a Santa Fe party coalition including the Socialist Party, the Radical Civic Union and other left-wing parties, since the parliamentary elections of October 23, 2005.

Education and background

Binner spent his childhood and teenage years in Rafaela. There he went to primary school at St. Joseph's College, and then attended high school at Rafaela's National College, where he began his political activity through participation in the Student Center. At the time (1958) the need for public free non-religious education was being hotly debated in Argentina. During those days Binner heard about Guillermo Estevez Boero, who was to become his teacher and guide into the socialist movement.

Binner moved to Rosario to study Medicine at the Universidad Nacional de Rosario. At 18 he become affiliated with the Argentine Socialist Party and continued to exercise an intense political activity, both as a member of the Student Center and at the institutional level in the Faculty of Medicine. After the coup d'etat and the breakup of democratic rule in 1966, he participated in the movements resisting the military dictatorship, against a background of political and ideological persecution.

He graduated in 1970 and continued his militant activism as a Graduate Council Member at the University, as well as working as a union member at the Rosario Medical Association and the Physicians' College.

Political trajectory

On April 23, 1972 Binner took part in the founding of the Popular Socialist Party in Buenos Aires, a merger of the Argentine Socialist Party (PSA) with other left-wing groups.

He continued exercising his profession, taking up specialties in anesthesiology and occupational medicine, and starting studies in the field of public health. On the last account he obtained the posts of Sub-Director and Director of public hospitals.

In 1989, after the economic crisis that led to the premature departure of Raul Alfonsin from the country's presidency and the assumption of Carlos Menem, the Radical mayor of Rosario Horacio Usandizaga resigned in mid-term, forcing anticipated municipal elections to be held. The Socialist Hector Cavallero was elected, and he appointed Binner to the office of Public Health Secretary.

After Cavallero's term, in 1993, Binner was elected concejal (member of the City Council) for the PSP. From this platform he developed a trajectory that led him to present himself as a candidate for the municipal elections of 1995.

As Mayor of Rosario

Binner was elected Mayor of Rosario in 1995 and then re-elected in 1999, ending his second four-year term in 2003. He was candidate to the governorship of the province of Santa Fe, obtaining a larger percentage of the popular vote than any of the other candidates, but the controversial voting system in place at the time (Ley de Lemas) caused the Socialist Party to lose the election to the Peronist Party.

The eight years of the Binner administration in Rosario were marked by several guidelines:

Decentralization and emphasis on the citizen's rule: The city was divided into several large districts, moving the bureaucratic structure from the Municipality to the peripheral barrios (neighbourhoods), and implementing mechanisms of direct democracy.

Emphasis on the public sphere and public welfare. The administration's Health Plan was acknowledged by the Pan-American Health Organization as a model for the rest of Latin America.

Positioning of Rosario as a strategically placed metropolis with a vast area of economic and geopolitical influence. Binner was a Founding Member and Executive Secretary of Mercociudades (cities of the Mercosur), President of the Ibero-American Center for Urban Strategic Development (CIDEU), and President of the Argentine Municipalities Federation.

On December 8, 2003, months after the end of Binner's second term, the United Nations acknowledged the people and the government of Rosario as a model of democratic governance among 257 Latin American cities .

Hermes Binner was succeeded in office by one of his former municipal officials, Miguel Lifschitz, who has continued and developed the policies outlined above, and was re-elected in 2007.

Other activities

Binner is a member of the National Table of the Socialist Party and the Secretary General of the Santa Fe Federation for the same. He is also the director of the Rosario's Municipal and Provincial Studies Center, an institution for political and academic formation with professionals of diverse disciplines debating current issues and policies.

As national deputy

Binner was a candidate to the National Chamber of Deputies (i. e. the low House of the Argentine Congress) for the Civic and Social Progressive Front, a Santa Fe party coalition (which includes the Socialist Party (PS), members of the Radical Civic Union (UCR), the Support for an Egalitarian Republic (ARI), Democracia Progresista, Communists and Peronist dissidents) in the parliamentary elections of 23 October 2005. He won the seat, together with other six candidates of the Progressive Front, by a 10% margin over the list of candidates led by his closest competitor, the Peronist Agustin Rossi.

Governor of Santa Fe

Binner ran for governor of Santa Fe in 2007, together with former Santa Fe City federal prosecutor Griselda Tessio as vice-governor, against former chancellor and national deputy for Buenos Aires City Rafael Bielsa (chosen in primaries by the Justicialist Front for Victory). He was supported by the left-wing opposition leader Elisa Carrio, head of the ARI. Aliado de Kirchner perde eleicao na 2 provincia argentina, BBC, 03 September 2007

Binner won the provincial election of 2 September 2007 by a significant margin (48%38% of the vote) over Bielsa. He was sworn in on 11 December, becoming the first Socialist governor in the history of Argentina, and the first non-Justicialist to rule Santa Fe since 1983.

Despite his opposition to the Peronist candidate, strongly supported by then-President Nestor Kirchner, First Lady and presidential candidate Cristina Fernandez and vice-President Daniel Scioli, Hermes Binner maintained a fluid relationship with Kirchner.

See also

History of Argentina

Politics of Argentina

External links

Official website

Hermes Binner's CV



Election results

Member of the Argentine Chamber of Deputies

Municipality of Rosario

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This article is licensed under the GNU Free Documentation License. It uses material from the Wikipedia article Hermes Binner

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