Tuesday, February 21, 2023, 9:00 p.m.
The umpteenth face to face between Pedro Sánchez and Alberto Núñez Feijóo in the Senate ended again with a bitter exchange of accusations. This time on account of the government’s feminist policies, which have revealed the fragility of the coalition’s unity. The leader of the PP took advantage of the control session to delve into the cracks between the PSOE and Unidas Podemos for the “only yes is yes” law, which has led to lower sentences for more than 500 sex offenders, and in particular for the law trans, which allows gender self-determination and which in Genoa they see “even worse” because it affects “adolescents and minors”. “He prefers to protect the coalition than women” (…) Stop bothering good people and meddling in the lives of others,” the Galician leader lashed out at the president. “To talk about feminism you have to have a certain feminist credibility,” replied Sánchez, who accused the PP of “always defending those at the top.”
As was foreseeable, the head of the opposition went on the attack as soon as he took the floor from his seat. In the seven minutes he assured that Spain is “tired” of the Government and its president. He brought up the dance of contradictory statements from his own Executive as a symptom of exhaustion of the bipartisan, the “problems” that it generates “every week” and how neither socialists nor purples “respect even forms” anymore. And all in front of a Sánchez who is “shut up”. “Hopefully you preside over half the Government and the other half – he mocked – governs you.”
Feijóo brought up the dismissals related to the fiasco of the Asturias and Cantabria trains – that of the president of Renfe and that of the Secretary of State for Transport – to stress that no one from the Government has resigned due to the “botch of ‘yes it is Yeah'”. “We can and the independentistas have more capacity to dismiss you than you to dismiss the ministers of Podemos,” he stressed, before warning of the pernicious consequences that he predicts for the trans law. “Do you agree on how it will affect parity, private spaces, in which minors can decide at 16 years of age without medical criteria to take hormones or perform definitive surgery?”, he cried, implicitly alluding to the divergences that emerged in the PSOE on the rule recently approved by Congress.
The president responded to a Feijóo who went on the attack this Tuesday, aware of the delicate trance that the Executive is going through, with the rosary of measures adopted by his cabinet for the “benefit of the Spaniards” and not for an “elitist minority” as, in his opinion, judgment, “always” does the PP. He insisted that a “stable” government like the one claimed by the Galician leader is one that, like his, approves three budgets on time and in due form and carries out 200 laws with different groups; or the one that convenes twenty conferences of presidents during the pandemic or approves the largest game in history in scholarships, with 2,520 million euros, as the Council of Ministers did this Tuesday.
Sánchez once again raised the flag of feminism to associate it with the initials of the PSOE and to question that the first opposition party assumes this profile when it opposed the abortion law promoted by former president José Luis Rodríguez Zapatero and, 13 years later, has ended up accepting after receiving the endorsement of the Constitutional. «They said ‘Butcher shoemaker’ for approving it. Today they recognize that what he was doing was enshrining women’s rights, “he reproached Feijóo in his reply.
Dispute for “good people”
The president also stirred up criticism of the trans law and after hearing from Feijóo that he left the “good people” alone. “I never imagined that recognizing the rights of minorities would bother good people,” he replied to a standing ovation from the socialist bench. Moncloa sources attribute the words of the PP leader to “a shit”. “Where are the good people”, they ask themselves in the environment of the president. In Feijóo’s team they qualified shortly after that he was referring to “jurists, doctors and professors”, the groups that, in his opinion, the Government has not listened to to draft the norm that facilitates the change of gender in the Civil Registry and the DNI .
Sánchez was especially upset when his rival came to compare the government’s social policies with taking out the “check book” and “buying on the street.” He claimed the increases in pensions, the increase in the minimum wage and the government aid packages as a way of “defending the working middle class” against a PP that is placed with “the elites” and that is why it resorts to Madrid and Andalusia. the new tax on large fortunes. “You never fail, every time you have the opportunity to position yourself in favor of social majorities – he reproached – you have chosen to benefit privileged minorities.”
And following the saying that ‘the best defense is a good attack’, he took advantage of his last speech to read the full messages of support that the popular spokesman in the Senate, Javier Maroto -sitting next to the leader of the PP-, sent him a year ago to his predecessor, Pablo Casado, before his political ouster. “When you get up,” Sánchez sarcastically warned Feijóo, “look to see if you feel anything behind your back.”