The self-confidence of Rufián, by Joan Tapia

In the debate on measures against the crisis, the ERC spokesman, Gabriel Rufian, famous for his great self-confidence, he confronted Pedro Sánchez: “you don’t like Podemos, or ERC, or Bildu, or Más País, they are looking forward to the support of the PP, Well, okay, but say it so that, at least, your voters find out & rdquor ;.

In the end, the decree was validated by 176 votes, more than the 167 of the investiture, but without ERC support who voted no along with the PP, Vox, and Junts. The official secrets commission was also approved, which will receive information on the wiretapping of the CNI and in which, for the first time, not only ERC and Junts but also the CUP will be present. Contrary to what Rufián said, Sánchez once again preferred Bildu’s votes to approaching the PP. The first left-wing coalition government, with the support of a progressive majority, it has undoubted assets such as having faced the pandemic crisis, not only without cuts but with advances such as the Minimum Vital Income. And it has fulfilled something essential in a democracy, the alternation. The PP, despite not liking it, does not have the right to govern forever.

The question is not whether the PSOE likes Podemos, ERC and Bildu, but whether this government and the so-called investiture coalition they are the most appropriate to continue governing now. Let’s go we can. The almost daily criticism and suspicion against the PSOE, the majority shareholder, does not convey confidence in political stability. That we can encourage a resolution of the Congress against the agreement with Morocco, a key country for Spain, the same day that Pedro Sánchez travels to Rabat invited by Mohamed VI, is unpresentable. Podemos could do it, if their ministers resigned first. But criticizing, accusing and voting with the opposition from the seats of the Government is not normal in democracies. And unless the president tolerates it.

Nor is it that the minister Belarra, in the middle of the Ukraine war, disqualify the relevant NATO summit in Madrid next June. The government does not comply the minimum image of coherence. And Podemos seems fractured between Vice President Yolanda Díaz, the leader appointed by Pablo Iglesias, and the Podemos ministers closest to the resigned vice president, now a talk show host. Big confusion.

Most of the investiture conveys an image of disunity. That ERC and Bildu do not support the labor reform -a great objective of the legislature- agreed with forceps with the CEOE, CCOO and UGT was disconcerting. Progressivism demanded to vote against the Government and the unions when they reach an agreement with the bosses in something as essential as the labor framework in the leading country of unemployment in Europe? Luck that the PP, by a clueless deputy, saved things.

And it is inexplicable that this week ERC has voted against some urgent economic measures – more or less successful – not because of disagreement with them, but because of a relevant matter, but totally unrelated to the delicate economic moment.

On Friday Eurostat data confirmed that with 0.2% growth in the first quarter (Spain 0.3; France 0 potato and Italy -0.2), and an inflation of 7.5% (8.3% Spain), Europe is close to the dreaded stagflation (high prices and little growth). Vice President Calviño has lowered the expected increase in GDP from 7 to 4.3% and is betting on inflation of 6.1%, which is dangerous and also difficult to achieve. And since the ECB is going to stop buying public debt in the summer, Italy and Spain are going to notice it immediately. Even more so if interest rates start to rise, which can no longer be ruled out.

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Measures will have to be taken that will not always be popular and this requires a determined and coherent government. Germany has it and is a coalition. Italy has with Draghi another one of national union, from the extreme right to the left. France will have it despite the fact that the presidential elections have shown a social fracture. Spain?

It is not a matter of ideological preferences, or the likes of Rufián, Sánchez or Feijóo. What is certain is that complicated times are coming – with the war in Ukraine in the background – and that governance will need more professionalism and coherence which is being offered today by some balances (or imbalances), perhaps well-intentioned but which are proving insufficient.

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