IÑAKI PARDO TORREGROSA, JUAN CARLOS MERINO
MADRID / BARCELONA
Yesterday, Pedro Sánchez took part in the closing ceremony of the Spain Investors Day investment forum.
J.P.GANDUL / EFE
The post-Convergencia supporters maintain their satisfaction despite the nuances of the Moncloa
Despite the satisfaction shown by Pedro Sánchez – “all’s well that ends well”-, the Government and the PSOE are now facing the hangover of the heart-stopping vote saved on Wednesday thanks to a series of last-second compromises agreed with Junts with concern and high doses of uncertainty. “This cannot happen again’, warn even PSOE leaders, who warn that in this legislature we must not ‘turn every vote into a Vietnam’, as Salvador Illa defined very graphically yesterday.
The prominence given to Carles Puigdemont’s party also makes socialist sectors uncomfortable. The convulsive parliamentary day, the strategy of legislating by decree, in addition to the agreement sealed with Junts in injury time – of which not even some of the ministers who will be affected by the agreed measures were aware – also took its toll on the Executive in the form of the anger provoked in other essential partners, particularly Esquerra, which asked Moncloa for explanations, but also the PNV and Bildu. And Podemos festered its own particular struggle.
Puigdemont’s supporters hope to have an impact on migratory flows and immigration permits.
The Government, in any case, was deployed yesterday to highlight the importance of the social measures in the decrees that were finally validated, and to reproach the PP for voting against them. And also to try to reduce the scope of the agreements signed with JxCat, or at least to qualify the interpretation of them by Puigdemont’s party, which since Wednesday night has not concealed its euphoria and even perplexity at what has been achieved.
The PSOE’s organisational secretary, Santos Cerdán, assured on Monday that if they managed to reach an agreement with Junts, they would make it public immediately. However, the PSOE did not disclose, in black and white, what agreements it finally reached with the pro-independence party, which is why it allowed JxCat to take the lead in relation to these initiatives in the first instance.
Despite the nuances of several ministers, the pro-sovereignty party welcomes the entente and the PSOE’s concessions.
Without a public paper signed by the PSOE – there is one, according to JxCat – the First Vice-President of the Government, María Jesús Montero, and the ministers Félix Bolaños and Pilar Alegría tried yesterday to limit the scope of the measures, which seemed to lower the enthusiasm shown by Junts by several degrees.
Thus, the government warned that the delegation of powers over inmigration will be specified in an organic law that will underpin it. In this sense, the secretary general of JxCat, Jordi Turull, acknowledged that for now there is only “a political agreement” that had not been reached before and that will be specified in a detailed negotiation with the Socialists. “In the small print we will have to reach an agreement”, Turull conceded.
The Executive warns that delegating competences on immigration will require the backing of an absolute majority
The regulation will have to have the backing of at least 176 MPs in order to see the light of day, according to the socialists. Therefore, the details of this delegation of powers will not only be the result of the agreement between the government and Junts, but will have to incorporate the rest of the groups in the majority of the investiture. “We will have to discuss the scope and the resources,” warned Montero, who stressed that responsibility for immigration will remain with the state, as it will not be transferred, but delegated to the Generalitat.
Turull, for his part, considered that in the delegation of these powers “there are key issues, in matters such as flows, language or labour issues”. “As a country and a nation, we have a lot at stake in this issue. It is not easy, but we assume our responsibilities. It is a major issue,” insisted the pro-sovereignty leader, who wants to have an impact on all these areas and on immigration permits.
The Treasury will only make its data available for fiscal balances: “There is no consensus on the methodology”.
Another of the controversial measures agreed, the suppression of article 43 bis of the Civil Procedure Act, “does not change anything”, in Bolaños’ opinion, as the jurisprudence on preliminary rulings before European courts is already well established. Junts, on the other hand, welcomes the fact that at least the judges are not being given an instrument, since, they say, the Supreme Court has not always followed this doctrine.
With regard to the public transport subsidy, the ministers stressed that the State will continue to subsidise 30%, regardless of whether or not each autonomous community assumes its 20% share, as it has done until now. However, the communities are no longer obliged to pay the remaining 20%, as was the case before.
Finally, the government will not publish the fiscal balances either, in the terms highlighted by Junts. According to Montero, what the Ministry of Finance will do is “make the data available” so that any administration or research centre can draw up its own fiscal balances. “There is no consensus on the methodology,” the vice-president claimed.
Be that as it may, the signed document has not transcended, and despite Moncloa’s nuances, there is satisfaction in JxCat. They see that in the clarification there is part of the story.