The single-coloured Government of Aragonès and the challenge of swimming without pumpkins in 2023

Esquerra is not accompanied either to carry out the independence agenda or to fuel the government machinery.

02 January 2023 Monday 01:32
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The single-coloured Government of Aragonès and the challenge of swimming without pumpkins in 2023

Esquerra is not accompanied either to carry out the independence agenda or to fuel the government machinery. Faced with a 2023 truffled of elections -municipal, regional and general-, it is up to the voters to render accounts and the parties tend to be more interested in how to win votes than to assume a negotiation to resolve the political conflict that they are not leading -Junts and the CUP- or that wears them out – the PSOE and the PSC – before the right. It also brings them upside down to support a Catalan Executive that would be one step away from falling if they deny him a new budget. The temptation to force an early electoral call is great.

The last precedent of a Government of a single party is that of Francesc Macià, in 1932, although the figure of Jordi Pujol transcended the initials he represented. ERC is back in this situation after Junts was absent from the Palau de la Generalitat in October. The difference is that Pere Aragonès, with 33 deputies out of 135, now has the least parliamentary support in history.

However, the ERC Government is not only bare-chested. The commons endorse both the proposal for a clarity agreement to agree on the conditions of a hypothetical referendum, and the new budgets. But it is a conjunctural company. Variable geometry – “measure to measure and project by project”, says Aragonès-, with elections involved, can fail depending on the interests of the parties.

Like JxCat, those of Oriol Junqueras have lifted the veto of the Catalan socialists. But today a stability pact is impossible. The only thing that would resemble it would be the endorsement of a budget for which those of Salvador Illa make the Catalan Executive sweat ink. More than agreeing, it would be about lending a hand. In return, the PSC would display the label of a responsible party, in addition to its imprint if the president assumes any of his big demands. Having budgets is key to clarifying the longevity of the legislature. Junts is further from helping.

Approving the accounts would allow the Government of Aragonès to swim without pumpkins, govern by itself, and try to exhibit good management or the "bon govern" that it proclaims so much. No one has flown alone since the restoration of democracy. “Who knows if with new accounts and without exceptionalities such as the pandemic, war and inflation we could extend them to 2024 and stretch the legislature”, they admit from ERC. To reject the numbers would be paralysis.

Some new accounts would boost ERC for the municipal elections. A fact of the utmost importance for a party with wide territorial and local implantation. They are your Champions. An achievement that would accompany the successes that the Republicans consider to have been derived from the dialogue table: the repeal of the crime of sedition and the redrawing of the embezzlement.

ERC aspires to the record number of candidacies: more than 830 lists for the elections on May 28. In Catalonia there are 947 municipalities. But there is a big thing: they paint the PSC as their main adversary, especially in Barcelona and its metropolitan area. It is with whom he is precisely trying to get along for the budget of the Generalitat.

Regarding the national axis, after Pedro Sánchez's resounding no to a referendum and almost burying the dialogue table, the Government has a very difficult time moving forward. The President of the Government considers that he has already granted enough. Marta Rovira, number two of ERC, already warned in August that before ending in 2022 there would have to be tangible progress in this negotiation space. "We give very little credibility to the fact that in 2023, with the municipal ones and some Spanish ones at the end of the year, there could be significant advances," she told Europa Press. There have been with sedition and embezzlement. The referendum seems unattainable.

Be that as it may, the Government is clear that it will not get up from the table, not even if the generals leave Moncloa in the hands of the PP. "Let them get up first."

In the Sant Esteve speech, Aragonès implicitly addressed the PSC for the budget, and the pro-independence parties to build a clear agreement that lays the foundations for a hypothetical referendum. He did not address Sánchez and drew 2023 as a transition with respect to the national axis. For this year, the referendum is not expected by Aragonés. Meanwhile, he believes it is necessary to understand each other between Catalans and forge this clear agreement.

The general state budgets were approved, in part, thanks to ERC. The quid pro quo has worked to advance dejudicialization at the dialogue table. But once this phase is over, Moncloa no longer needs the Republicans and they do not have notable elements of pressure, if it is not that the Government of the PSOE and United and Podemos is pending the approval of important social laws in Congress, such as housing .

The animal protection standard or the changes in the gag law are also about to be placed on the starting platform, in addition to the pension reform or the validation of the latest anti-crisis measures. As much as Sánchez has given the PSC a free hand to assert itself as it wishes, the Republicans keep these tricks to guarantee if the endorsement of the Illa people is needed for the Catalan accounts, rather than to advance "in the new stage" of dialogue that Aragonès wants to undertake at the table to address self-determination.

Sánchez also claimed that the "procés has died." If the sentence is accepted, the president will have to do the impossible to resurrect it and devise a kind of reprocessing with the agreement of clarity with enough care so that it is not seen as a setback for the rest of the independence movement. From one word to another there is only one letter of difference.

In fact, for Junts and the CUP, the dialogue is a setback for independence aspirations. "The anesthesia", they have said at the same time that they have affirmed that with the reform of the Penal Code no progress has been made. They believe that the changes in the crime of public disorder are counterproductive. With Sánchez concluding the dialogue table, it completely vanishes for Aragonès to attract the rest of the pro-independence parties to the clarity agreement.

The decision taken by the Court of Justice of the European Union (CJEU) on the preliminary rulings raised by Pablo Llarena will also mark the mandate of Aragonès. The sentence, scheduled for January 31, will determine what margin Belgium has to reject the Euro-warrants and the extradition of Lluís Puig, but it will have repercussions on Carles Puigdemont. Also in the independence movement, whatever the resolution, if the former president returns or not, to the point that it could shake the pragmatic strategy of the ERC Government



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