Democracy, the ‘Catalan way’
The Statute of Catalonia establishes that the eight senators who represent Catalan government in the Senate must be distributed proportionally among the forces that obtained representation in the Catalan elections; this would have to guarantee one senator for Vox, after having obtained eleven MPs.
The Law on the procedure for the appointment of senators who represent the Generalitat in the Senate recalls that “article 61 of the Statute of Autonomy of Catalonia attributes to the Parliament the appointment of senators who represent the Generalitat in the Senate”. The appointment must be carried out in a specific call and in proportion to the number of MPs of each parliamentary group”, it remarks.
The norm also highlights that “the Board, in agreement with the Board of Spokespersons, determines the number of senators that corresponds proportionally to each parliamentary group” and adds that “if, when distributing candidates, there is a tie between two parliamentary groups or more, the candidacy is attributed to the group that does not have any male or female candidates, if it is the case; otherwise, to the group that obtained the highest number of votes in the elections in Parliament…”
After the Commission of the Statute of MPs gives the approval to the candidates presented by the parliamentary groups, it is the president of the Parliament who proposes the names of the candidates to be appointed senators on behalf of the Generalitat and, subsequently, they are voted in a specific plenary session.
ERC, Junts, the CUP and the Comuns have asked the Board of Spokespersons to explore a legal loophole to prevent the Parliament from appointing a regional senator from the Santiago Abascal formation VOX. The PSC; on the other hand, is opposed because “we have to be respectful of the will of the whole of the citizenship that has voted on finished options” and it defends that action be taken within what is “established by the Law and the Statute”.
In the last legislature, the independence movement asserted its majority in the Parliament to overturn the appointment of Miquel Iceta as senator, when he had already got an agreement to preside over the upper house with Pedro Sánchez. However, it did not deny the PSC its right to send a representative to the Senate, as it now wants to do with Vox.