Demand for elections
“Independence is a failed project, a serious offer is needed for a quality government”
Was Barcelona prepared for the coronavirus crisis?
The challenge has been met on a very good note. Work has been done in the field of nursing homes, in hospital extensions, we have enabled spaces for the homeless … And we have avoided any type of controversy with the Government or the Generalitat.
Will the Guàrdia Urbana now adopt a more restrictive role in enforcing, for instance, capacity limits?
Abuses must be avoided, but their role is to provide information and support. We cannot put a policeman behind every citizen.
You say that they have avoided controversies, but they have criticized the Government for the homes.
We have expressed our concern where we should. There has been an exercise of responsibility and containment even in criticism.
Has there been this contention within the Government?
One of the problems that the country has is the paralysis of the Government and the confrontation between the partners. There is a clamor in favor of elections that allow us to clarify the picture. And it is not a problem of the pandemic, it comes from before.
President Torra wants to wait to channel the post-Covid-19 crisis to call elections.
It is Torra’s great irresponsibility. He knows that there is an exhausted Government, with mistrust between the members, manifest and reiterated. Now he goes back off the hook with the referendum. There is a situation of misgovernment that must be redirected.
Is there an alternative to the current pro-independence majority?
This is where we have to work. It is my challenge and that of my political group. There is a space for orphan catalanists. We have been voting for too many years because there is no reference to Catalanism.
You reproache the president for putting the referendum on the table. What is your offer?
Obviously, I am not defending a referendum. I am proposing a negotiated agreement with the State that, if necessary, can be countersigned by the people of Catalonia. Starting with the question yes or no, is nonsense. It is a bygone page and has been shown to lead nowhere. I believe in dialogue and in a very wide confluence of Catalan obedience with the will to understand Spain.
But Units per Avançar is within the socialist PSC groups in the Parliament and the Barcelona City Council.
We are working on a Catalan center alternative. We defend a new thing. We are neither for a remastering of CiU nor for creating the sociovergence.
What would be the sum of acronyms?
There are Units, next week the Partit Nacionalista de Catalunya will be constituted and, on both sides, there are political forces and movements that should be part of this confluence that I defend.
Lliures and the Lliga?
I wouldn’t want to leave anyone out. I’m going to an integrative process, not so much of acronyms as of sensitivities. We have to dialogue and put as few red lines as possible.
Thus, you are ready to make the leap from the City Council to the Parliament.
If the conditions are met, of course. The subject is not yet mature, but I am willing to exercise that leadership. But with guarantees of success. I have a commitment to Barcelona, and I will not make a suicidal leap or let anyone else do it.
What would be the success? Have representation? Be decisive?
We have to work to be decisive and break the infinite tie that has already lasted eight years.
The objective is to prevent independence from ruling?
Exactly, we need an alternative to the inaction that independence has led us to. We can integrate independentists, but it is not a project to make independence.
So would you always add in a block that can go from the socialists PSC to the Comuns, Citizens or the PP?
We are a large center space. With the PSC there is a very plausible understanding, but we could open the range for formations on both sides of the political spectrum.
Would not add more with the PSC?
We want to create an autonomous space, with a vocation to understand each other, yes. It must be an electoral candidacy, without giving up organic integration in the future.
You have little time.
We have to hurry. We call for work in the coming weeks. We have contact with the Poblet group and we have already had meetings with economic and social sectors.
And the two million independentists voters?
We have to make them understand that this has not led to anything. They have been led to believe an idea with a point of romanticism that was absolutely impossible. Citizens deserve a serious offer for quality government.
Republicans ERC already offer a “pragmatic pro-independence movement”.
What we offer is reliability. The historical capacity of Esquerra Republicana to be wrong is infinite.
Is the dialogue table between governments an opportunity to resolve the Catalan conflict?
I am very skeptical. The solution is through an electoral call and that an alternative appears.
But the PSOE accepted it.
There was a need to see if they were able to sit down, but it has already been seen that the Catalan Government is unable to work with loyalty. Torra has continually questioned her.
What role does Carles Puigdemont have to play?
He has to find a personal way out. It is a drag on Catalan politics. It has never been their time, but now it is less than ever.
And the prisoners of 1-O?
There are legal instruments for them to be on the street as soon as possible. And we must end the judicialization of the conflict.
Wouldn’t you want to see them in a political role?
Everyone has to have a place in the sun, but there is no point in continuing to work on a failed project. Independence is a path that is dead and I am convinced that, within them, many of them also think so.