Four weeks before 23July, we could not remember a more eccentric electoral campaign were it not for the fact that another four years of Sanchezism are at stake. And this comedy could turn into tragedy until 2027.
A month ago, Spaniards dyed blue and green 3/5 of the territories. It was a direct motion of censure on Pedro Sánchez and this PSOE united with Podemos, ERC and Bildu. Sánchez has begun to make a pilgrimage on television explaining his progressive policies. Few believe him.
After not having granted a single open interview, he goes to the media - who have "persecuted" him so much - to tell us that he has never lied, that he is a man of his word, that "he has only changed his policies for reasons of state" and to deny that he has never made a pact with Bildu or ERC.
The Best Spain
Let's look at the facts. Pedro Sánchez is a guy with "mobile principles"; he changes them according to the menu prepared for him by Tezanos, his Arriola of choice. He keeps changing his advertising slogans in Moncloa and Ferraz - we govern with you, we are with the people, vote what you think - and now "The best Spain". He never explains the philosophy behind these messages in the run-up to the general elections. What is the best Spain for the socialists? Simple: to stay in power at any price. And with the same travelling companions.
The May results have changed the chip on their shoulder. From Caesarist arrogance they have moved on to Franciscan humility. Without abandoning the Falcon, of course, to take Gran Wyoming for a ride. It's not funny.
The president is unrecognisable. He knows that he and his 4,000 cronies, with succulent salaries paid out of the budget and another 10,000 tied to the BOE, are at stake.
His meeting with the parliamentary groups in Congress and the Senate was an improved parody of King Jong Un's congresses. He confessed to them that by bringing forward the elections he was "sacrificing" himself for all of them; they applauded him to the point of exhaustion, like Lenin. Yesterday we learned that he has in fact surrounded himself with a praetorian guard, to survive the electoral Waterloo in the middle of the summer.
He will leave a good part of his cronies in the job market; the rest will go straight to the INEM. And what will be the mood of those who have been left in the lurch? He is now asking them to make a supreme effort to perpetuate himself in the presidential palace for another four years.
The candidate, unable to connect with the street, has demanded "6 televised face-to-face meetings, 6", with Núñez Feijóo; five years ago Sánchez himself refused this format and demanded that Rajoy, Rivera, Iglesias and even Abascal, without parliamentary representation, should be present. The Central Electoral Board applied the law and did not allow VOX to participate.
Sánchez, reconverted into an interviewer for Ferraz TV - "un agradaor"- has already introduced Escrivá and Planas, who have limited themselves to saying that "the pension fund was looted by Rajoy" and that the PSOE-Podemos-ERC-Bildu and Teruel Existe- will fill it in the coming years. If you vote for them, of course...
The Social Security hole (some 50,000 million a year) was not even mentioned. Planas blushed with presidential praise and went so far as to say that "the countryside, fishing, drought... and fires" have become state issues since the arrival of our providential man. Meetings with Marlasca and Irene Montero will break the ratings.
We hope that in this exercise of transparency, Sánchez will tell us the truth about the handover of the Sahara to Morocco and Pegassus; the deaths of immigrants in Melilla last year, the changes of government delegates a few days before the elections, the dismissal of the director general of the Guardia Civil and her corrupt family; it is time to explain about Tito Berni. One of his disciples, Manuel Arribas, heads the list for Ávila. The rest of the candidacy has resigned in shame. There are still decent socialists left.
Sánchez has applied his exclusive authoritarianism to armour himself with his "95+65 Ayete parliamentarians" to keep his seat until the XLI Federal Congress or until the next one, if he is exiled in Santa Elena.
The plumbers of Moncloa after the intrusiveness of Bolaños on 2 May are not what they used to be. The 28-M has left them without ideas. However, the candidate-president, the Minister of the Presidency, the government spokeswoman and the heads of the Treasury and Economy are insulting as before. Feijóo is a coward in the face of Pedro el Valiente and Abascal a dangerous ultra-right-winger. Both endanger the reception of the European Funds of which we have never known how much money has arrived or how much has been distributed or to whom.
Transparency will continue to be, along with opportunism, waste, irresponsibility and arrogance, the unfinished business that this government wants to pass in a desperate playoff exam.
They think that by bringing forward the elections in the face of the deterioration with their coalition partners and fellow travellers -ERC and Bildu- we are going to forget about the pardons for the coup plotters, the ETA members on the lists, the reduction of sentences for embezzlement of public funds, the Eres, the Training Courses, Tito Berni, Ambassador Morodo and his family, the Sisi Law, the trans law, euthanasia, the abandonment of ALS patients, the students who pass the course without passing the exams, the students who pass the exams without being able to pass the exams, the students who pass the exams without being able to pass the exams, the students who pass the exams without being able to pass the exams, the students who pass the exams without being able to pass the exams; of the students who pass the course without passing, of the thousands of students in the selectividad exams whose grades are inflated to mask school failure and to deceive the PISA programme in public and private education; of the mistreatment of the countryside -farmers, stockbreeders and hunters-, of fishermen, of the self-employed and of low-level civil servants -the workers- in the Public Administration (Justice, Police, Civil Guard, Firemen, forestry agents). There are more than a million court cases blocked until November.
This government sinks almost everything it touches. More than half of Spain is painfully fed up with a president who has been unable to "persuade" Irene Montero to rectify the law "progressive spiritual guide of the world" that has freed more than 1,200 sex offenders, 130 of whom are already on the street. The president and his thousand or so advisers did not expect such "unintended effects". And he has not stopped her either. Neither her nor Belarra nor Garzón nor Yolanda for constantly insulting businessmen.
Sánchez himself insulted Galán and Botín in the Congress of Deputies... to receive her in Valencia with the Etruscan smile of "dear Patricia"... Cynicism in its purest form. As if to believe him and vote for him even though we have become orphans of centrism.
In five years, never have so few people done so much damage to so many Spaniards. Here are just a few examples of the failures of these "martyrs" of misunderstanding. "The people have been unfair; they were wrong to vote for them", they cry like paid mourners for not having known how to communicate all their progressive policies. Now they want two million citizens to reset their experiences, forget the hysterical and antidemocratic Memory and change their vote to continue colonising the institutions, the CIS, RTVE, the TC, the CGPJ, the State Attorney General's Office and the Post Office. And they attack us with their explicit support for Catalan and Basque, against Castilian, making thousands of workers feel like foreigners in their own country who are not eligible for a job in the third part of Spain.
Of course, if they remain in power they will serve the best Spain on a platter... to the criminals.
The PP built an artificial beach in Madrid and filled it with umbrellas. Parasols don't vote. Fortunately. Borja Semper plagiarised not only the name of the series starring Chanquete but even the theme tune. RTVE has asked him to withdraw it. Genova 13's Factory of Ideas has never been very original. The campaign coordinator's video has arrived in the middle of a heat wave. Semper preaches calm after preaching the end of the world hours before the first post-electoral agreement in Valencia.
The Eurovisionist Carlos Mazón, winner of the elections, neutralised Flores and accepted as vice-president a prestigious lawyer and bullfighter: Vicente Barrera. Better in the hands of bullfighters than gunmen. The first real PP-VOX agreement is based on 40 points of unbeatable quality. No more aggression against the Spaniard after eight years of permanent assassination by Ximo and Baldoví, the protectors of Mónica Oltra, wife of the rapist of a minor she was guarding.
A few hours later, the PP votes were generously given to the PSOE in Vitoria and Durango and five more votes were given to the unfaithful PNV in town halls to prevent Bildu from governing them. The next day, the four Popular seats blessed the socialist Jaume Colboni as mayor, who promised loyalty to the Magna Carta, but as soon as he arrived in office he ordered the Spanish flag to be removed, as Colau did and as Trías would have done.
Reconquering Valencia and freeing it from a gang of "Catalanists tainted with economic, family and moral corruption, '-"we are all Oltra"- and preventing Junts, the party of the coup leader Puigdemont from being left without the baton of power - "fuck him"- was Feijoó's greatest feat. There was talk of the decisions of a "statesman". And the PP president believed it.
The Valencian agreement disconcerted Moncloa and the left of the left. The reactionary progressives went for the jugular of the right, the extreme right and the extreme right. The Russians are coming! The fear of the Doberman is no longer valid.
Within 24 hours, government terminals and social networks predicted the end of civilisation, while popular and voxist voters confirmed that this was the new social majority of the country.
But the PP barons began to panic. In the campaign they all insisted on obtaining absolute majorities. Only Ayuso (CAM) and Capellán (Rioja) achieved their goal. The acting president of Murcia, Fernando López Miras, from Pimentón, two seats short of a majority, after making a pact with some VOX defectors and some conspirators from Cs, stood up and said: "This is as far as we have come". He made a pact with the PSOE for the seats in the Regional Assembly and claimed for himself all the legitimacy to govern alone... And Vox is waiting for him in the next few hours with sawed-off shotguns.
In the Balearic Islands they have reached an agreement in principle, with the PP ceding the presidency of the Legislative Chamber to the olive-green party of the military MEP Jorge Buxadé. We shall see what the response is after having sacrificed Campos Asensi, a fighter for liberties against Francina Armengol and her legion of separatist collaborationists of the Great Catalonia, who murdered the Spanish, the Balearic and the Ibizan.
In Aragon, the former mayor of Zaragoza, Jorge Azcón, with 28 seats won the victory over Lambán, who cowardly stalemated against Sánchez and paid dearly for it. His pent-party was a nest of vipers, from the PAR to the Chunta via Podemos and the PSOE-A itself.
Azcón's good result requires the seven seats of Abascal's party. They have already won, without compensation, the presidency of the Cortes. Azcón is seeking support from Teruel Existe - new in that seat with three seats - and is negotiating with the PAR of the nonagenarian Hipólito Gómez de las Roces, whose most famous phrase in the Congress of Deputies was dedicated to Felipe González: "You, Mr. President, are capable of giving a lifetime pension to the widow of the unknown soldier". The PAR is today an appendix of the darkest business of the grinders who want to destroy the Montes Universales. Let's wait with fingers crossed for the change of cycle on the banks of the Pilar.
Cantabria deserves a separate chapter because Revilla wants immunity for his infinite corruptions. Is that the "honesty toll" paid by Mrs. Saénz de Buruaga?
And, as if the spectacle were not enough, the comedy club of popular and voxist actors has found a postinera artist: María Guardiola.
A gentle Extremaduran co-opted by the ineffable Alberto Casero, who voted in favour of the Labour law in Congress and gave wings to Yolanda Díaz to storm the skies of cheesiness. Doña María has done all the campaigning against VOX, not against Fernández Vara. After the polls opened she came second. The coroner won. And two days later, the blonde began to attack VOX mercilessly. She accused it of everything. Abascal's party radicalised its position. Suicide mission: PP and VOX lost control of the Regional Assembly. Four seats went to PSOE and UP, and the other two seats to PP. Vox voted for itself - as in Barcelona capital - intimidating Ms Guardiola's party. Its ordago aggravated the division.
In a display of foolishness, the PP leader is ready to go to the polls again in November because she is convinced she will win an absolute majority. Go home, María! Neither has she unseated the PSOE nor does she want to make a pact with VOX.
The crisis has grown bigger with Feijóo's silence to the point that Don Pedro has risen from the dead of 28M and wants to return to the road. They're back for everything! The polls have pushed the PP and VOX back five points and they are miraculously close to 176 seats.
This week will be decisive. Not even the inauguration of Isabel Díaz Ayuso, with her courageous speech against Moncloa, will influence the elections on 23 July.
Lack of leadership
Núñez Feijóo has not understood that to lead means to command. And on important issues such as the unity of Spain, the defence of Castilian, Justice, Education, Health, foreign policy, the drought, the PHN, Europe, the Maghreb, Latin America, NATO, the invasion of Ukraine, AI and digitalisation, we must have very clear ideas. And act coherently in all territories.
The Decalogue he presented last week does not excite anyone. It augurs a programme without ambition. Rajoy encore.
Even those of us who have always voted centrist (UCD, CDS, UPyD and Ciudadanos) thought we were voting to repeal Sanchismo. I admit that my vote was useless. It was a last option for the sake of coherence.
The ups and downs of the last few days confirm that Feijóo does not control the party and that the barons do as they please. The PP president continues to swing, reciting the same mantra: "I want a sufficient majority". And a ham with two boiled eggs. There is not a single public or private poll that gives him an absolute majority. Not one. In all cases it will depend on Santiago Abascal. His theory that the most voted list should govern has been useless; he himself transgressed it in Toledo and Guadalajara, for example.
Is he going to abstain so that Vara can once again reign supreme in Mérida? To top off the incongruities, Doña Cuca, publicly explained herself in this way: "The PP is closer to the PSOE than to VOX". Let's get out of here. It doesn't even deserve a vote in La Rioja.
Does Génova think that the doctor president will abstain if he comes second to facilitate his investiture? He doesn't know the real Sánchez, the one with the "no is no"; what part of no has he not understood?
The reasonable thing would have been that after the election night call with Santiago Abascal they would have met with light and stenographers - in Congress itself - to agree politically on what the Spanish people endorsed at the polls. A photo for history for the new change. And then, a team of experts would sit down to promulgate the programmatic bases of the municipal, regional and new Executive agreements, with the reference of the Mediterranean Pact.
Has Don Pedro congratulated him for giving him Barcelona, Vitoria and Durango? Has he thanked him for the fact that the PP voted in favour of the reform of the "yes is yes" law that neither Pedro himself nor Yolanda or Belarra or Montero or ERC or Bildu voted for? Nor will it do so, Mr Feijóo.
Pérez-Castejón already knows your weak point: you never take risky decisions; you are more conservative than Rajoy, whose favourite phrase is well known. This is a mess! Don't get wrinkled. In risk lies hope.
The sorayos and arriolistas have won the first battle in Genoa. The kingdoms of Taifas have worked and have done a disservice to his candidacy for the Presidency of the Government of the Nation.
This lack of courage will explode in the campaign again, as it has already happened by insulting Mr Bendodo as a Nazi Jew. The immortal Amparo Rubiales, president of the Sevillian PSOE rectified the Jew but reaffirmed the Nazi. This is the Socialist Party of today. Now it plays the victim and always plays with marked cards.
Mr. Núñez Feijó: what will you say when you need the seats of Vox to democratically dislodge Mr. Sánchez, who has humiliated you so many times during his mandate at the head of the PP? Are you going to allow the five presidents of the autonomous regions of the PP to delay their investitures so that you arrive virgin on July 23? The crisis cannot wait.
The people have spoken loud and clear. But they have to endorse this punishment vote against Sánchez. And more emphatically. Meet as soon as possible with the leader of VOX and talk about how to end this hell of progress. Have you really understood the message?
VOX's turn towards militarisation of the party in the last year has been impressive. Abascal has become the High Priest. He has surrounded himself with a cohort of militant-soldiers where the party - all together - worship the personality of Don Santiago as if he were Lenin or the new Ché. A caudillismo "North Korean style".
Forbidden to speak or give press conferences outside the party without the express authorisation of the "soviet". Internal discussion of central committee decisions prohibited. Expulsion of liberals from the party, dogmatism in matters of faith, morals and religion. They intend to re-establish the kingdom of Christ on earth. Opacity in the party's accounts and an invisible but effective invasion of the Mexican El Yunque, the new redemptive and anonymous fundamentalist force to which eternal oath and loyalty must be kept. An ultramontane current that already dominates the party.
Intransigence and vengeance against the PP, claiming that they will not give away the votes they have received, mark their new strategy: the rise to power and the official car. There will be no votes for "blue socialism", the handsome gentleman from Bilbao rants.
For the moment, the PP-VOX confrontation is the best cover for the president to have halted his free fall. There is a party. If blues and greens do not reach an agreement before the elections, we will have Sanchismo until the next decade. Conservative MPs have always been contemptuous of their voters. It seemed that on this occasion the objective was clear. Not so. Spain is at stake.
The left to the left
Yolanda has passed the test of Irene Montero's political defenestration, with a belated phrase: "It's not our style". The Minister of Labour speaks in fits and starts like Epi y Blas. She thinks we are all ten years old. She comes to promote the "wellbeing of Spaniards". The same philosophy as VOX. Curiously. She promised a programme in Magariños that never arrives. She spouts her witticisms as she debuts her new outfit and hairstyle. The smiles, canned. Like the applause of his troops. Spain is waiting for them, he whispers to his admirers.
Occurrences: a cheque for 20,000 euros for those who turn 18... to get to know the world; a reduction in the working week from 40 to 32 hours. The inspectors of her department have been on strike for months, fuck them... She does not dialogue with intransigent people. The employers should pay the bills for their whims. And a lot of conciliation and a lot of free time for love.
Her career as a climber and opportunist has always been spent with the PCE card in her teeth, although she has betrayed nationalists, tides, IU and now dismantles Podemos. She has put fifteen heterogeneous parties in the cabin of the Max Brothers with the sole purpose of heading a list full of enemies in order to hand over the seats to her protégé Pedro Sánchez.
I find it hard to understand that she is the actress with the most political credibility. It reminds me of 2005 when the most valued politician was Paulino Rivero of Coalición Canaria who was appointed president of the 11M Commission. The PSOE and PP ensured that the conclusions did not serve to clarify anything.
The second vice-president will have to wake up a bit before taking part in the television debates. She wants to be in all of them. She has already discovered something new: people are having trouble making ends meet. True. The Spanish economy comes out of Covid with household consumption in full recession. Now it has also become a banker. She offers 3.25% to activists and sympathisers who advance her more than 200 euros. Who guarantees the loan? She is worth it.
Yolanda has not yet been able to release the number of permanent employees who falsify all the labour statistics. They are still counting them. We are not going to oppose the SMI or the SMV. But what we would like to know is why you covered up for a collaborator of yours accused of child pornography and expelled from the party the two innocent people who denounced him. Will he present in society his number 2, ambassador still at the United Nations, who supported the Catalan process, condemned the "repression" of the coup plotters, is against NATO, is in favour of the invasion of Ukraine, in favour of handing over the Sahara to Morocco and who, cowardly under a pseudonym, took a stand against the Parliamentary Monarchy? An exemplary Trotskyist, a friend of Maduro and Petro.
Another yes, I ask: Will the president of the (Plurinational) Movement Sumar include in her programme the request of the Comunes and Podemos for a Referendum for the secession of Catalonia in the next legislature?
Stepmother Yolanda is a bluff and will get less seats than UP. And of course it will be below VOX.
Ah, don't worry about Irene Montero's crocodile tears. The solidarity of her crowd is inversely proportional to the huge salary they will receive as public officials. Doña Irene will be coordinator of nothing in the Party with a salary and extra pay; her silence is a guarantee that she can be rehabilitated for the European elections in May 2024 in the starting positions. There is money there. And a life pension with two mandates. Ten years of adventure paid for at the price of gold.
She will remain minister until 23 July; from 24 July she will continue "in functions" until a new government is formed. If the Popular and Voxistas continue to ride the wave of irresponsibility, Sánchez can confirm her for her feminist quota so that the father of her children does not get angry; if the first round has revealed the path of change, the former Minister of Equality, despite her disastrous management, will receive 80% of her salary for the next two years as loss of earnings. She will also receive five monthly payments from Congress, one for each year she has been a member of parliament. And furthermore, when she reaches retirement age, for her great services to her country she will receive the maximum pension in 2058.
Voting in self-defence
I insist that these general elections are the most decisive in our lifetime; we are playing for the change we deserve. A large majority has turned out for the PP-VOX tandem against the deceit, populism and impoverishment of PSOE-Podemos and their friends. After the bad loss of Trías, Puigdemont's spokesman in the mayoralty of Barcelona, now he threatens to join forces with ERC to strangle the State on all fronts. They are going back to the hills. They already promised they would do it again. We are facing a serious threat of secession, with no legal mechanisms to stop Aragonés, Colau, Podemos, ERC, Otegui, the Christian Democrats of the PNV and the necessary collaborators of the PSC.
Illa negotiates with the insurgents, without complexes, the Diputació de Barcelona - 1,200 million budget with contract renewal to the wife of the fugitive Puigdemont - so that the business works.
Either we democrats vote massively for the Magna Carta, the Transition and the Parliamentary Monarchy... or we will go back to Sanchismo's war-civilianism. What a left and what a right, as our admired Santi González warns.
This is not the comedy club, which can turn into tragedy, farce, sainete or entremés. We are talking about food, more freedom and more democracy in the face of Bolivarian populism. The future of our children and our children's children is at stake. It will take a decade to forget this tragicomedy of Don Pedro and Sanchismo. And a lot of courage to dismantle so much demagogy. Now more than ever we miss Doña Inés. I forgot to forget her. Blues and greens, urgent pacts now; without fears and without complexes.
Antonio Regalado directs BAHÍA de ÍTACA at: