The Latest: Argentine ex-president congratulates Fernández

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A supporter of center-left Peronist presidential candidate Alberto Fernández and running mate, former President Cristina Fernández, pauses for the camera outside her party’s election headquarters to wait for results in Buenos Aires, Argentina, Sunday, Oct. 27, 2019. Argentina could take another sharp political turn in Sunday’s presidential elections, with center-left Peronist candidate Alberto Fernández favored to oust conservative incumbent Mauricio Macri amid growing frustration over the country’s economic crisis (AP Photo/Natacha Pisarenko)

BUENOS AIRES, Argentina (AP) — The Latest on Argentina’s elections (all times local):

10:30 p.m.

Former Argentine President Cristina Fernandez is congratulating her running mate, Alberto Fernández, before thousands of jubilant supporters in Buenos Aires.

She presided over Argentina from 2007 to 2015, and is poised to make a dramatic return to high office as Alberto Fernández’s vice president.

Authorities say Alberto Fernández has 47.83% of the votes compared to 40.66% for incumbent Mauricio Macri, with 91.21% percent of the votes counted. He needs 45% support, or 40% support with a 10 percentage point lead, over the nearest rival to avoid a runoff vote on Nov. 24.

The result would mark turn leftward in South America, which has seen conservative governments elected in Brazil, Colombia and Chile in recent years.

The largely peaceful election was dominated by concerns over rising poverty, soaring inflation and a sharp depreciation of the local currency.

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9 p.m.

Argentine authorities say center-left Peronist candidate Alberto Fernández is leading the presidential election as frustrated voters appear to reject conservative incumbent Mauricio Macri’s handling of an economic crisis.

Authorities say Fernández has 47.21 percent of the votes compared to 41.42 percent for Macri, with 65 percent of the votes counted Sunday.  

Macri was elected president in 2015 as Argentines rejected a successor chosen by former President Cristina Fernández. She is now seeking a return to high office as vice president on the Peronist ticket with Alberto Fernández.

The result would mark a sharp political turn in South America, which has seen conservative governments elected in Brazil, Colombia and Chile in recent years.

The largely peaceful election was dominated by concerns over rising poverty, soaring inflation and a sharp depreciation of the local currency.

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8:10 p.m.

Hundreds of supporters of Argentine presidential candidate Alberto Fernández are cheering outside the gate of his apartment building, some of them chanting “Alberto Presidente!” 

Hundreds more are waving sky-blue and white Argentine flags outside his campaign headquarters Sunday after polls closed in a polarized presidential election expected that could move the South American country leftward.

The celebrations come after exit polls by the TN, C5N and América local television channels gave Fernández a lead over Macri. But local media did not release percentages in the polls following a ban on doing so under Argentine law.

Initial official results are not expected in about an hour.

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6:30 p.m.

Polls have closed in Argentina where officials say there was a heavy turnout in what has been a largely peaceful election.

Voting could bring a political shift leftward with center-left Peronist candidate Alberto Fernández favored to win a presidential vote dominated by frustration over an economic crisis that has eroded support for conservative incumbent Mauricio Macri.

Initial official results are not expected for several hours. But exit polls by the TN, C5N and América local television channels give Fernández a lead over Macri nationwide. Local media, however, did not release percentages due to a local ban on doing so.

Fernández’s vice presidential running mate is former President Cristina Fernández, who governed Argentina from 2005 to 2015.

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4 p.m.

Argentina faced a potentially sharp political shift on Sunday with center-left Peronist candidate Alberto Fernández favored to win an election dominated by frustration over an economic crisis that has eroded support for conservative incumbent Mauricio Macri.

Macri was elected president in 2015 as Argentines rejected a successor chosen by former President Cristina Fernández, who is now running as vice president on the Peronist ticket with Alberto Fernández. The two are not related.

Polls closed with a heavy turnout in largely peaceful elections. Initial official results are not expected for several hours. Exit polls by the TN, C5N and América local television channels give Fernández a lead over Macri. But local media did not release percentages following a ban on doing so under Argentine law.

A victory by the Fernández ticket would mark another political swing in South America, which has seen conservative governments elected in Brazil, Colombia and Chile in recent years. Cristina Fernández was considered part of the “pink tide” of leftist governments that arose in the region in the 1990s and 2000s.

Now the region is being rocked by unrest in Chile, Bolivia, Peru and Ecuador fueled by discontent over corruption, inequality and slowing growth.

Copyright 2019 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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