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  • Cristina Fernandez gives election night speech to supporters.

    Cristina Fernandez gives election night speech to supporters. | Photo: Twitter/ Unidad Ciudadana

Turnout reached almost 80 percent, according to electoral authorities.

Former president Cristina Fernandez won a seat in Argentina's senate at the same time Mauricio Macri's conservative Cambiemos coalition made gains in both houses, according to the results in Argentina's heated mid-term legislative elections.

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Cambiemos won about 40 percent of the vote while the Front for Victory coalition led by Fernandez trailing in second with over 30 percent nationally. 

In the province of Buenos Aires, Fernandez, who is currently trailing the government's candidate Esteban Bullrich by 7 points, ran for a Senate seat in the in Argentina's largest province of Buenos Aires.

In Argentina's proportional election system, the first place party wins two senate seats while the second place wins the third seat, meaning Fernandez secured a place in the upper house representing the province.

Speaking to supporters, Fernandez said her United Citizens movement "emerged as the firmest opposition" to Macri's government, which she accused of "only being capable of causing pain to the immense majority of the country."

The former head of state chided former party members that broke ranks, and said her new "national and popular" political outfit is "here to stay."

The contest saw one third of the nation's Senate and roughly half of the lower-house up for grabs, in what many saw as a test for Macri's government, which has been plagued by protests to his neoliberal reforms.

Cambiemos was en route to win 61 of the 127 seats in the Chamber of Deputies and 12 of the 24 Senate seats. Groups aligned to Fernandez's won as many as 48 seats in the lower house, along with 10 Senate seats. 

Fernandez's coalition campaigned on fighting "the reinstatement of the neo-liberal model" under Macri.

The former head of state has been fending off charges of corruption - she insists they are politically motivated.

For his part, Macri is seeking a mandate to continue with his economic and labor reforms which unions social groupd have denounced as increasing poverty and hunger in the country.

The vote comes days after officials confirmed the identity of a body found in the Chubut River as belonging to Santiago Maldonado, the missing activist who disappeared following a police crackdown on a protest by the Indigenous Mapuche community in the country's Patagonia region.

Maldonado's disappearance became a national scandal, prompting massive nation wide actions calling for officials to respond to accusations that he had been forcibly disappeared.

 
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