Monsignor Luis Villalba, the Roman Catholic archbishop of Argentina's Tucuman province, has declared that Article 80 of the provincial constitution requires the governor to swear allegiance to 'God, the Fatherland, and the Christian saints.' Such an an oath is impossible for the leading gubernatorial candidate for the upcoming elections: Jose Alperovich, a federal senator and high-ranking member of the Peronist party, <a href="http://www.latimes.com/news/nationworld/world/la-fg-argen12jan12,0,2019239.story?coll=la%2Dheadlines%2Dworld">is Jewish</a>. Alperovich, the grandson of Lithuanian immigrants who fled the violence of World War II, said that although he is not particularly devout, he refuses to deny his religion and is challenging Article 80 in the provincial Supreme Court. The Monsignor, however, has said that 'We must follow the constitution to the last detail.... Our country is falling apart because no one follows or respects the law.' Article 80 was written in 1990 when the provincial government was dominated by retired army General Antonio Bussi. Bussi, a right-wing politician and a major player in Argentina's <a href="http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/americas/2206534.stm">'dirty war'</a> of the 1970s and '80s, redesigned the provincial flag to depict a large white crucifix and also drafted a law that mandated all public and private schools, including San Miguel de Tucuman's Jewish school, to raise the newly designed flag each day. Since 1999 Bussi, who has not commented on the current controversy, has faced an international arrest warrant on charges of 'terrorism, genocide, and torture' during the Argentine dictatorship. Those who worked alongside Bussi adamantly support Villalba and Article 80. Julio Suriani, president of the 1990 provincial Constitutional Convention, said the requirement makes sense in a province with a Catholic majority of 99.5 percent: The same thing happens in Israel, where a Catholic could never be president, no matter how many votes he wins. (In actuality, there is no such provision in Israeli law.).... We should follow the old Roman aphorism: Dura lex, sed lex. The law is harsh, but it is the law. Pablo Clavetti, leader of Bussi's Republican Force party, fears that 'If we keep going this way, we'll allow even the insane to become governor.' And one newspaper columnist accused Alperovich of 'wanting to tear down [Tucuman's] cathedral and replace it with a synagogue.' Yet another glaring example of how much religion infusion in to the Constitution of any country, is more of a travesty than a step forward.