The Moncloa is determined to do pedagogy with the measures promoted by the Minister council since the beginning of the socio-economic crisis as a result of the war in Ukraine. That is why the order to ministers and officials of the PSOE is to exhibit, explain and show off the measures in each intervention, so that they report political gains in the next municipal and regional elections. Pedro Sánchez takes charge of this strategy.
The Prime Minister took advantage of his appearance at the Congress to reel off all these measures and contrast them with those launched by the PP a decade ago on the occasion of the financial crisis, while the opposition has criticized its “triumphalism” and also that the socialist MEPs voted against a resolution last week to urge Morocco to respect freedom of expression and press.
“In EuropaToday Spain exports solutions to the energy and price crisis. 10 years ago, we imported bailouts for bankrupt banks and cuts in our Welfare State”. The phrase summarizes the approach with which the chief executive has come to the Congress. Take advantage of the focus to break down measures in detail and contrast it with the PPbut using for this the decisions that the popular ones made 10 years ago, in the middle of the global financial crisis.
Sánchez looks to the past to try to gain momentum in the face of a demoscopic scenario in which all the polls, except the CIS, they give the victory to the PP. Moncloa wants the situation in Catalonia to be an electoral asset in this 2023 election cycleand that the “noise” that bothers the President of the Government so much does not obscure a clear objective that has been set, along with his own: to crush with the message that there is not a single Spaniard who has not benefited from his measures: labor reform , helps hydrocarbons, VAT reduction basic food and electricity, the Iberian exception, increase in the minimum wage, limit to the increase in rent…
“These are measures that unite Spain,” Sánchez boasted from the rostrum. “And they unite it in a different way than some proclaim from different squares in Madrid and who believe they have the exclusive right to the Constitution and patriotism.” A clear allusion to the recent demonstration in Madrid, called by civil society, but which was attended by officials from the PP, Vox and Cs. “The best patriotism is the one that reduces inequality and the wage gap.”
The atmosphere in Congress in this first plenary session of 2023 was one of “discount time.” That the legislature is in extension. The electoral pre-campaign is launched and each party, beginning with the government itself, takes advantage of these opportunities to sell itself, while devaluing its adversary. But on this occasion, Sánchez has seen how not only the right wing, but also its governability allies –United We Can, ERC, collect, PNV– They have pulled the ears of the Executive and have demanded compliance with agreed matters and go further in the approved measures.
The notices and warnings have been clear, direct: “You could be thrown out of the Moncloa an excess of prudence in the social sphere” (Rufin from ERC); “He has to take care of his parliamentary partners. If you don’t take care of this unkempt garden that Parliament has become, and you don’t nurture relations with your potential allies, this Legislature It will seem like a path of roses compared to the following one” (Aitor Esteban from the PNV); “It is good to make great speeches full of transforming and progressive rhetoric in international forums, but afterwards, Mr. Sánchez, you have to comply with what is said in front of its citizen” (Mertxe Aizpurua de Bildu).
The feeling of the partners of Snchez it is that the chief executive has already put on the handbrake and they fear that the remaining year of the legislature will be a mere transition to the general elections in December. That is why they try to put pressure on the Executive knowing that the measures they want to promote, the medals they want to hang, have to be now. They’ve all pulled out their to-do list. The first, United We Can, to sit in the Minister council.
Jaume Asens He has asked Snchez to unblock the Housing Law and agrees to regulate rents. All PSOE partners blame him for “slowing down” and not turning a deaf ear to his demands, preventing this regulation from seeing the light. “We need that photo of the Housing agreement, to regulate rental prices. We have done it with the masks, the tests, the gas… it is time to approve the law. Listen more to the people and listen less to the vulture funds “. Pablo EcheniqueFor its part, it has brought to Congress the demand for its departure: intervene in the market to cap the price of a basic shopping basket, as well as cap variable mortgages.
The government’s relationship with ERC It is a roller coaster, but the independentistas are a governance partner and the relationship seems to be consolidating. Of course, the Catalans do not miss the opportunity to distance themselves and squeeze the Government to achieve their demands, as happened with sedition or embezzlement. Gabriel Rufin has made Snchez ugly that his measures are “rcano” and “temporary”, criticizing that he has given “umbrella” in the midst of the storm of the socioeconomic crisis. “The hardness that people’s lives are getting is what can throw them out of La Moncloa. Gasoline and electricity prices have slowed down, but living and eating have not.”
ERC also demands the Housing Law, like Bildu, and cap food prices and tax the profits of supermarkets. Precisely Mertxe Aizpuruaof eh Bildu, has indicated the pending accounts of the Government with its formation, and the rest of the partners: in addition to the Housing Law, the repeal of the gag law and the pension reform. He also described as “temporary and insufficient” all the measures taken.
The PNV He complained that his investiture pact is in the drawer of oblivion and that while the demands of the Catalan independence parties are met, his are ignored. “He has wasted an excellent opportunity to reduce inflammation, to have a gesture with Catalonia, and to complete the investiture agreement with the PNV,” said his spokesperson, Admit Esteban. He has made Snchez ugly that “he has not lifted a finger” to fulfill the investiture commitment to facilitate the Basque presence and participation in Europe and has complained that the Government wants to establish a large reception center in Vitoria that the Basque government rejects.
Critics from the opposition
For its part, the PP has censured the “triumphalism” of the president, defending him against the rise in inflation, mortgages and electricity bills, the unemployment data and that his social and economic measures are going to cost the next generations ” 200 million euros a day in debt”. “Its policies are erratic and its management chaotic. This is the balance sheet of a government that fortunately for the Spanish is now entering discount time; that is, you are a lame duck, as they would say in the US,” said the spokeswoman for the main opposition group in Congress, Cuca Gamarra.
In addition, Alberto Nez Feijo’s party has criticized the “paper role” of the socialist MEPs who voted against a resolution to urge the Moroccan authorities to “respect freedom of expression and press and guarantee those imprisoned a fair trial with the due procedural guarantees”. “By the way, who did you stay with? With Le Pen. And all with a meeting in sight in which he vetoed the presence of half of his government,” Gamarra added, alluding to the absence of United We Can from the summit. from Rabat next week.
The PP has also insisted on the need for all political forces to support an initiative to rectify the sentences that have been lowered in application of the law of the just s is s and that “no aggressor has a lower sentence than the one he would have had under the previous Penal Code.” And, after the repeal of the crime of sedition and the reform of embezzlement, they warn that the Government has “guaranteed” to ERC the holding of an illegal referendum after the elections.
For Vox, what happened last week in the European Parliament and in the davos forum They are proof enough that the Government, and especially Sánchez, must give more explanations to the citizens about what is behind their decisions. “It is a mixture of autocracy inside and submission abroad,” Santiago Abascal has defined, referring to the mismanagement, evidenced in the anti-crisis plan approved this Tuesday, and the change in Spain’s position on the Sharia “that has not yet explained” the president to the citizenry.
“No one can trust you. There is no government committed to Ukraine and its sovereignty that can trust you. It generates distrust outside our borders,” lamented the president of Vox about the position of the United We Can sector in the Council of Ministers regarding to send military defensive materiel to kyiv.
In fact, in Vox they consider that the Government shields itself in its “story” above the measures, especially in this double electoral course. Thus, Abascal has denounced the “marketing of a North Korean leader” that Sánchez exhibits “playing petanque with his affiliates” this past week in Coslada, after the “applause of the billionaires” in Davos and the “boos” of the working classes in any point in Spain.
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