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President's wife wins Argentina presidential election

Cristina Fernández de Kirchner, the wife of Argentina’s president, Nestor Kirchner, claimed victory late Sunday, becoming the first woman to be elected president of the country.
Kirchner, 54, the center-left Peronist party candidate and a senator, made the claim after early official results, based on 15% of ballots being counted, gave her 42% of the vote, with her nearest rivals ex-Economy Minister Roberto Lavagna with 21% and former beauty queen Elisa Carrio with 18%.
The New York Times said that Kirchner is the second woman to be elected leader of a South American nation in two years, after Michelle Bachelet, who became Chile’s president in 2006.
In her victory speech Sunday, Kirchner said she felt a responsibility to lead her country and also to her gender. The BBC quotes her as saying, “We have repositioned the country, fought poverty and unemployment, all these tragedies that have hit Argentines,? referencing the country’s recovery from their economic crash in 2001.
According to The New York Times, voters appeared to favor a continuation of Kirchner’s husband’s policies, but the next president has the challenge of taming inflation and a looming energy crisis.
Kirchner was nicknamed “Queen Cristina? by other politicians early in her career, according the Times. She did only light campaigning for this election, which had a fractured opposition, spending a large part of the past two months traveling in Europe and the United States trying to win over foreign investors.

The New York Times:
http://www.nytimes.com/2007/10/29/world/americas/29argentina.html?ref=world

BBC News:
http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/americas/7066776.stm