Sánchez tries to gain territory from his allies

Not everything will be a bloody duel with the Popular Party.

Thomas Osborne
Thomas Osborne
30 December 2022 Friday 21:32
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Sánchez tries to gain territory from his allies

Not everything will be a bloody duel with the Popular Party. In this new year of a marked electoral nature, Pedro Sánchez has in his target the recovery of the Barcelona mayor's office by Jaume Collboni, in a tough struggle, in the space on the left, with the commons of Ada Colau and with Esquerra Republicana. The electoral battle between socialists and republicans will also extend to the metropolitan area of ​​Barcelona, ​​particularly with the ERC's commitment to its spokesperson in Madrid, Gabriel Rufián, to contest the mayoralty of Santa Coloma de Gramanet against the socialist Núria Parlón, in office since in 2009, and with an absolute majority since 2015.

The President of the Government also wants the PSOE to recover the electoral pulse in the City Council and in the Community of Madrid, with the candidacies of Reyes Maroto and Juan Lobato. And, to begin with, the Socialists have the objective of overtaking Más Madrid at the polls as the first force on the left. The same occurs in Valencia, where Compromís was already in first position in 2015, this time with the candidacy of the current deputy mayor, Sandra Gómez. In the PSOE they even caress to snatch the mayor's office of Vitoria from the PNV, with the candidacy of the socialist Maider Etxebarria.

In other words, the chief executive will put his coalition with United We Can in the central government, and his parliamentary alliance with a good part of the partners of the investiture bloc, to the test in the fight for the municipal and regional elections next May. that support him in this legislature. All of them will also be essential for Sánchez to be eligible for re-election as Prime Minister after the December 2023 general elections, and to launch a new legislature under his mandate, if the numbers come out.

In Moncloa and Ferraz, however, they take it for granted that Sánchez will preserve his alliance with Unidas Podemos and with the investiture partners of the imminent electoral battles. "There is a question of unavoidable political pragmatism: to transform you have to govern", they allege in the leadership of the PSOE. "The investiture partners have shown during this legislature that they support advances in rights and the protection of the middle and working classes in the crisis," they highlight.

"We are already in opposition to ERC now in Catalonia, despite the fact that Salvador Illa won the elections, or we form a government with Compromís and the PNV in the Valencian Community and in the Basque Country", they highlight in the PSOE. "This is the second issue: recognizing the plurality of Spain, something that the right has not understood after more than forty years of democracy," they say. "The PSOE is the party that most resembles Spain, and that is reflected in the possibility of sealing agreements with multiple political forces," they defend. "Feijóo's PP, on the other hand, can only and wants to agree with the extreme right of Vox," they settle.

In the specific case of ERC, and after three years of legislature in which Sánchez reactivated the dialogue table with the Government, granted pardons to the pro-independence leaders convicted of the process and, finally, promoted an express reform of the Penal Code with the repeal of sedition and the review of embezzlement to culminate the agenda for the dejudicialization of the political conflict in Catalonia, in Moncloa they do not see the need to reconvene the negotiating table. At least until further notice.

In the PSOE they warn that Sánchez and the entire party are already entering "electoral mode". "And we set our own profile", they add, not only before ERC but also before Unidas Podemos.

For this reason, the intention of the Socialists is to maintain the dialogue and negotiations with ERC, but for now limited to the initiatives and the pending legislative agenda, such as before the next validation in Congress of the last decree of anti-crisis measures approved by the Council of Ministers last Tuesday. "Now we are focusing on the elections and there will be no room for new adventures," they settle.

After the municipal and regional elections, and already facing the general elections next December, Sánchez will not have to submit to new negotiations and assignments with Unidas Podemos and the groups of the investiture block to obtain their support for new budgets, because this Government will not prepare the project by 2024. The Minister of Finance herself, and Deputy Secretary General of the PSOE, María Jesús Montero, considers that the right thing to do is to leave the Executive “hands free” that can be formed after the elections.