The mayor of Madrid, José Luis Martínez-Almeida, believes that the writer Almudena Grandes does not deserve to be the favorite daughter of the city where she was born, which she defended and where she died on November 27 at the age of 61, a victim of a cancer, and considers that it is the result of a “weakness” of the left that has been included as a point of the budget pact that it reached with the Mixed Group.
Almeida has made these statements in a interview published this Monday in OKdiario entitled “Almudena Grandes does not deserve to be Madrid’s Favorite Daughter but I already have the Budgets”And that is being highly criticized on social networks, to the point that Almudena Grandes and the same Almeida have become a trend on Twitter. The poet Luis García Montero, widower of the writer after 30 years of relationship, He has answered him on this same social network in a message calling the mayor’s statements “petty.” “It should treat us Madrilenians with more dignity. If he feels traitorous to his friends on the extreme right, there he is. Thanks to Madrid and the City Council for naming Almudena Favorite Daughter ”, he adds.
In an interview on Sunday in EL PAÍS, a newspaper in which Grandes was a columnist, the poet and director of the Instituto Cervantes talks about the notorious absence of institutional condolences from the mayor and the president of Madrid at the time of his death. “Personally, I didn’t miss anyone; Institutionally, yes. I have friends from the Popular Party. Marta Rivera de la Cruz, Minister of Culture, was there. I did not miss the PP because with Almudena and with me he has little relationship. Much less to Vox. I have appreciated the gesture of the City Council when it has had it and I missed it when it did not have it ”, explains Montero.
I read petty statements from the mayor about @AlmudenaGrandes. It should treat us Madrilenians with more dignity. If he feels traitorous to his friends on the extreme right, there he is. Thanks to Madrid and the City Council for naming Almudena Favorite Daughter.
– Luis García Montero (@lgm_com) January 3, 2022
At full interview video, the mayor and national spokesman of the PP recalls that, when the writer died, the municipal government – made up of PP and Ciudadanos – voted in plenary session against naming her favorite daughter, as did Vox, although the government coalition did support her a street.
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Asked in the interview about a phrase by Almudena Grandes that “every morning I would shoot two or three voices that drive me crazy”, Almeida calls those words “regrettable”, while pointing out that “he is a person who has had a career, which has had literary awards, and which was also linked to Madrid ”.
“We do an exercise of equanimity, and we say nothing happens to give it a street. What did not seem to us is that she had to be the favorite daughter of Madrid “, continues Almeida, adding that” the problem is faced by a left that, in order to approve some Budgets and a budget agreement, has to ask that Almudena Grandes be declared a favorite daughter ” .
“I honestly say, I would not have done it if it were them, because I do not believe that Almudena Grandes should be the favorite daughter of a budget agreement, but that is not a sign of our weakness, it is a sign, in my opinion, of argumentative weakness who raises it, that to approve some Budgets wants to impose Almudena Grandes “, continues the councilor. Almeida refers to the fact that the Mixed Group, made up of three divided councilors from Más Madrid under the name Recupera Madrid and who are close to the former mayor Manuela Carmena, included in the pact to carry out the municipal Budgets of 2022 to name the writer daughter Favorite, as had been proposed in the municipal plenary session in which this distinction was rejected.
In the interview, Almeida insists that in the negotiation of Budgets “you have to make a balance and a weighting.” “So, if I can lower taxes to 700,000 IBI receipts and that Almudena Grandes is a favorite daughter, I think that the people of Madrid prefer to lower taxes,” is one of the examples he gives. “Maybe I’m wrong”, he adds, “but does anyone really think that a budget of 5,600 million euros could fall because the left, in my opinion in an exercise of weakness, says that we have to do Almudena Grandes favorite daughter? ? ”.
“Well, it is a weighting that I have done. Now, you tell me, do you think it deserves it? I think not, but in order to carry out the Budgets, you have to make assignments “, as happens in all negotiations, which will” more or less “like the parties involved, concludes Almeida.
Councilors of Más Madrid and PSOE, in addition to other personalities, are censoring on social networks the words of the mayor and national spokesman for the PP. “How great is Madrid for Almeida”, has written, for example, Rita Maestre, spokesperson for Más Madrid, while asking Almeida to apologize for his flawed tone. The PSOE spokeswoman, Mar Espinar, has tweeted: “And now it’s a little message to contain yours. Perhaps the one who does not deserve to be mayor of Madrid is him. Regrettable, Almeida ”.
Even the President of the Government, Pedro Sánchez, has intervened in the controversy by recalling that Grandes wrote: “Over time I understood that joy was a weapon superior to hatred, smiles more useful, more ferocious than gestures of anger and discouragement.” “It was a privilege to live with her in a space of freedom and fraternity such as Madrid,” says Sánchez.
Given the refusal of PP, Ciudadanos and Vox to name Grandes the favorite daughter of the city, a campaign was started to collect signatures in Change.org to reconsider their position, and that already exceeds 63,000 signatures. The initiative calls for the title to be awarded to the writer for being “a person who has represented the best values of this city: dignity and decency,” emphasize its promoters.
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Eddie is an Australian news reporter with over 9 years in the industry and has published on Forbes and tech crunch.