Podemos demanded until the last moment that Irene Montero continue to head the Ministry of Equality in the new Government of Pedro Sánchez, unveiled on Monday. But it failed. According to the purple leadership, the president had made a “huge mistake” by dispensing with Montero. Although this opinion is not shared by other formations nor is it widespread among Spaniards.
The trans law and the law of only yes is yes are presented by Podemos as the two great contributions of the Montero stage to collective progress. But they had high costs. The first caused an unprecedented and destructive earthquake in the territory of feminism and had an impact on the cohesion of the LGTBI movement. The second had a serious unwanted effect: conceived to protect women from sexual assault, it also ended up reducing the sentences of 1,205 convicts and releasing 121 (according to CGPJ data from September), which discredited their mentors and offended their peers. victims, and not only them.
The defense of Montero's candidacy began to manifest itself two months ago, when Ione Belarra, general secretary of Podemos, and now also a dismissed minister, said of her partner that she was the best head of Equality and should continue. That wasn't saying much, since she had only one ancestor, who we remember mainly for coining the term member. But this defense intensified little by little, and concluded on Tuesday with a transfer of powers by Montero and Belarra in which their resentment surfaced, reproaches against Pedro Sánchez or Yolanda Díaz and veiled threats to the stability of the leftist coalition resounded. All of this staged with a raised fist.
It is difficult to understand that Podemos put all its eggs in Montero's basket. Really, is it your best asset? Now, it cannot be said that it was the first surprising decision of this party. It was already true that Pablo Iglesias – with whom Montero forms a young power couple with Leninist essences – decided to abandon the vice presidency of the government, after a year and a half in office. It was also true that he appointed Yolanda Díaz as his successor and then was surprised that, in the exercise of his powers, he made decisions without accepting the tutelage of his promoter, certainly displaying friendlier and more politically productive ways.
Díaz got this right, because the fragmentation of the left requires a lot of dialogue and discourages any attempt to patrimonialize this political space or any temptation to extemporaneous cult of personality. The first thing is to make friends, in case you can make an agreement with them later. The vice president knows it well, who smiles and hugs without rate.
Perhaps Montero's mistakes have to do with his youthful courage and the speed of his rise: Podemos leader at 26, deputy at 28, minister at 32 and former minister at 35. As Green Day sang, Too much , too soon . Perhaps something similar can be said about Podemos, which in 2011 had the ability to bottle the indignant movement of 15-M under its own brand, and in 2015 already dreamed of joining the PSOE, because it was the third parliamentary force and had 69 deputies. . Now it has 5 and, on sleepless nights, the evanescent ghost of Ciudadanos appears to its leaders.
But perhaps we can also attribute these errors to the arrogance of the purples, who seem to have reached the conclusion, also wrong, that in democracy errors are not paid for. Well yes, they are paid. Sometimes, some time later, at the polls. Sometimes before. Puigdemont and the independence movement have already paid for them, in the form of downward support. The PSOE will probably pay for the audacity of its leader, which he considers reparative, but others disapprove more or less loudly.
Feijóo's PP will pay for their flirtations with Vox and for their insubstantial style of opposition, based on the discredit of the rival and the absence of its own, viable and progressive alternatives. But, as we said, there are those who have the decorum to pay for mistakes in advance, like the Portuguese premier António Costa, who rushed to resign when he was linked to a corruption case, which later deflated.
How could Montero not pay them, whose law has benefited those it was supposed to punish and has alarmed its victims?