Argentina’s presidential race takes an odd turn

Argentina’s two remaining candidates for president are set to debate on Sunday, and the question “Does too much sex lead to malnourished kids?” may have just made it onto the docket.


That’s because the opposition candidate, Mauricio Macri, has tapped a guy named Abel Albino to lead his Integral Program Against Malnutrition should he win the election on November 22nd.

Albino is best known as the founder of the CONIN Foundation — an institution in Mendoza Province looking to end infant malnutrition in Argentina — but following the announcement that he’d be joining a prospective Macri administration, numerous outlets pointed out that his book, To Govern is to Populate: Responsible Parenthood or Assisted Fornication? (no, I did not make up that title), reads like it came out of an 19th Century Catholic mission. In the book, Albino takes extreme stances against contraception, and calls for women to live in chastity in a subservient position to their eventual husbands.

And, yes, he thinks that malnutrition is caused by parents having too much sex.

From The Bubble:

Abel Albino, via

Abel Albino, via

Of note (and get ready to face-palm or get really angry), he claims that society can lower malnutrition rates by waging war against contraception, promiscuity, pornography, auto-eroticism, infidelity and couples living together out of wedlock.

“Infant malnutrition is a cultural sickness that originates from participating in sexual activity frequently and compulsively,” says the expert. We couldn’t make this up if we tried.

And we thought Marco Rubio’s faith outreach guy had some wacky ideas about sexual morality.

Macri is hoping to ride a wave of frustration with government corruption and economic stagnation into office, but his opponent, Daniel Scioli, has gained traction lately by highlighting Macri’s social conservatism. Macri has said in the past that homosexuality is a mental illness, and he opposed marriage equality as Mayor of Buenos Aires. He has also said that he will not address the issue of abortion if elected, despite the fact that women across the country have called for a law legalizing it.

This being the case, one would expect social issues to play a larger role in Sunday’s debate than Macri would otherwise hope for. The more time he spends addressing whether he thinks homosexuality is a mental illness and whether sexual promiscuity will lead to the depopulation of the country (yep, Albino’s made that argument, too), the less time Scioli has to spend addressing whether high-ranking members of his party are actually drug kingpins.

Jon Green graduated from Kenyon College with a B.A. in Political Science and high honors in Political Cognition. He worked as a field organizer for Congressman Tom Perriello in 2010 and a Regional Field Director for President Obama's re-election campaign in 2012. Jon writes on a number of topics, but pays especially close attention to elections, religion and political cognition. Follow him on Twitter at @_Jon_Green, and on Google+. .

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