de la Rúa, Fernando

de la Rúa, Fernando, 1937–2019, Argentinian political leader, president of Argentina (1999–2001). A lawyer and member of the Radical Civic Union, he won a senate seat in 1973, then ran unsuccessfully for vice president that year as the running mate of Ricardo Balbín. After the senate was dissolved following the 1976 coup, he practised law and taught at the Univ. of Buenos Aires. With the collapse of the military dictatorship in 1983, he unsuccessfully challeneged Raúl Alfonsín for the party's presidential nomination, but then won a senate seat. He was elected to the chamber of deputies in 1991 and to the senate again in 1993. After becoming the first elected mayor of Buenos Aires in 1996, he ran successfully for president in 1999 as the candidate of a center-left coalition. Taking office amid an economic crisis, he was unable to shore up the country's finances and resigned in disgrace after days of rioting, a run on the banks, and the resignation of his cabinet.

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