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Day 2 Latin America Struggles for DemocracyImportant Leaders (1900-Present Day)
Juan Peron • Elected Argentine President for three terms • Overthrown by the military and forced into exile in 1955 • While in office: improved infrastructure, supported workers movement, and paid off foreign debt • Wife: Eva Peron “Evita” adored by the Argentine people • The Perons crushed any opposition to their rule (Juan Peron & Evits 3:07)
Raul Alfonsin • Human Rights lawyer • 1983-1989 President of Argentina • “Dirty War” occurred during his presidency • Economy suffered under his leadership • Is credited with restoring Democracy to Argentina
Carlos Menem • Born 1930 • Juan Peron was his idol • Served as governor of La Rioja and Buenos Aires • Served as President of Argentina from 1989-1999 • Corrupt administration
Nestor Kirchner • President of Argentina (2003-2007) • Former governor of oil-rich province of Santa Cruz • Wife was a popular and influential Senator during his terms • Goal: was to improve the economy
Cristina Fernández de Kirchner • Born 1953 • Influential Senator before becoming President • Wife of former President of Argentina Nestor Kirchner • First elected female president (2007-Present)
Getulio Vargas • Dictator of Brazil in the 1930s • Suppressed opposition • Ruled for 18 years • Tried to improve the economy through improved industry • Considered the father of the Brazilian poor
Juscelino Kubitschek • Brazilian President 1955-1964 • Developed Brazilian economy • Built new capital-Brasilia (too expensive) • Land reforms-broke up large estates and gave land to the peasants (Brasilia 2:13)
Jose Sarney • Brazilian President 1985-1990 • Lawyer • Country had huge debt and high inflation • Could not solve economic problems and lost support
Fernando Henrique Cardoso • Brazilian President from 1995-2003 • Former Senator • Some success with economic and political issues that the country was facing • Promoted free-market economics • Tried to close the gap between the rich and the poor
Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva • Current Brazilian President • Assumed office 2003 • Won reelection and will serve until 2011 • Social programs top his agenda
Mexico (Mexico’s History 20:39)
Carlos Salinas • Mexican President 1988-1994 • Youngest President in Mexican history • Harvard educated • Disgraced politician-economic policies devalued the Peso (currency) by 200% and sent the country into a terrible recession • Signed NAFTA • Forced into exile for some time
Vicente Fox • Worked his way up in the Coca Cola Corporation • Elected to Congress in 1988 • Former Mexican President (2000-2006) • Supports capitalism • “Down-to-earth man of the people” http://www.thedailyshow.com/video/index.jhtml?videoId=109239&title=vicente-fox (PRI & Vicente Fox 1:31)
One-Party Rule in Mexico • Mexican Constitution passed in 1917 following the Mexican Revolution. Constitution outline democracy and promised reforms • National Revolutionary Party is created by Mexican Presidents who served from 1920-1934 • 1946-NRP changes its name to the Institutional Revolutionary Party (PRI). Would control Mexican politics for the next 71 years. • Although Mexico had a stable government under PRI control, it was not a perfect Democracy. Party members were corrupt and ensured that only PRI members would be elected to office. • Beginning in 1988 after decades of protests and uprisings members of other political parties did win seats in Mexico’s Congress. This began a gradual opening of the political system in Mexico. • 2000-Center-right candidate Vicente Fox won the Presidency ending PRI rule. • Significance-Mexico has finally begun to resemble a true Democratic nation.
Felipe Calderon • Became Mexican President after closest election in Mexican history Opposes US’ building of a wall between the US-Mexico border • Harvard educated lawyer • Promises to continue free-market economic policies • Goals: improve poverty & expand healthcare and education • Mexican President (2006-Present)
Hugo Chavez • Born 1954 • In and out of prison for failed political coups • Outspoken Socialist leader • “President” of Venezuela (1999-Present) • Supports universal education and health care • Hates the US under the Bush administration-warming up to America under Obama’s administration