UPDATE 1-Argentine opposition presidential candidate Macri slams attack ads

lunes 2 de noviembre de 2015 14:52 GYT

(Adds markets context, 9th paragraph)

By Hugh Bronstein

BUENOS AIRES Nov 2 (Reuters) - Argentine opposition candidate Mauricio Macri accused the ruling party of fear mongering after a weekend barrage of online attack ads warned he would throw people off welfare and reduce living standards by devaluing the currency.

"Imagine yourself without a home. Imagine yourself hungry ... Imagine yourself if Macri wins," says one ad, flashing images from the 2002 economic crisis that threw millions of Argentines into poverty. It was tweeted by ruling party loyalist Luis D'Elia.

Macri, the mayor of Buenos Aires and an advocate of free markets, defied the opinion polls by easily getting enough votes in the Oct. 25 election to push ruling party candidate Daniel Scioli into a Nov. 22 run-off.

"The official party is showing a dark strategy of trying to sow angst and fear with the sole goal of frightening people over the possibility of change," Macri said on Facebook.

"But it's not going to work," said Macri, who promises to jumpstart investment and fight inflation while keeping needed social programs in place.

Scioli is from the same party as outgoing president Cristina Fernandez. He said his campaign seeks not to sow fear but to remind voters of the risk of returning to the free-market policies of the 1990s, which preceded the 2002 crisis.

On state-owned TV, a sports commentator on Saturday suggested Macri could return the rights to air soccer games to pay-per-view channels, a franchise ended under Fernandez when she instituted her "Soccer for Everyone" program.   Continuación...