Thursday, December 2

Sánchez urges his barons not to show the differences in financing

The secretary general of the Extremadura PSOE, Guillermo Fernández Vara.

The secretary general of the Extremadura PSOE, Guillermo Fernández Vara.

The participation of PSOE in the act of November 2 in Santiago de Compostela, together with two presidents of the PP and Miguel Ángel Revilla is currently in question. Silence has taken hold of the socialist communities and no one now confirms their attendance at a forum raised to vindicate the Spain depopulated in the new financing model, which was going to bring together Alberto Núñez Feijóo (Galicia), Alfonso Fernández Mañueco (Castilla y León), Adrián Barbón (Asturias), Javier Lambán (Aragón), Emiliano García-Page (Castilla-La Mancha), Concha Andreu (La Rioja ), Miguel Ángel Revilla (Cantabria) and Guillermo Fernández Vara (Extremadura).

The miscegenation with the PP, when the Ministry of Hacienda is about to open the debate on the new system, the fact that Feijóo announced it amid intense criticism of the Executive and Catalonia and the proliferation of these hybrid meetings (A few weeks ago there was a meeting between the Valencian Community and Galicia) they have annoyed the Executive, which since Thursday is trying to prevent its barons from attending this conclave. The pressure has already paid off. That same day, La Rioja confirmed that he was taking off the hook and on Friday none of the rest of the presidents assured his presence. In fact, they are going to take advantage of the fact that everyone is at the party congress in Valencia to meet and talk about it.

But his decision on how to proceed is highly conditioned by the opinion of the Government. Executive sources admit that They have been called to order so that they do not attend, although they recognize that it is possible that “some” do. They assume that each autonomy has its position but what they want is that the discrepancies are not made visible. Just as the appointment of Galicia has bothered the meeting of Ximo Puig and Juanma Moreno. “One began to create a side and now to see how we stop this,” they say in the Government in reference to the Valencian president.

The exhibition of these differences has accelerated in the PSOE the debate on the need for a common stance in financing. Until now all the leaders, popular and socialists, have boasted of independence, meeting with communities of another political color, with the same problems and challenges. Rich with rich, poor with poor. Populated in one part, depopulated in the other. But the reality is that historically the leadership of the PP and PSOE have imposed a internal minimum agreement. And this is what the PSOE intends to do in the coming weeks, once the annoyance of the appointment in Galicia has been saved.

The president of Extremadura, Guillermo Fernández Vara, as the new head of Regional Policy, will be in charge of trying. He has already set the task for himself. This purpose has defenders and detractors. Some territories consider it unfeasible. For others, however, it is essential. The position usually changes depending on whether one is president or head of the opposition. The presidents are more skeptical of the internal pact, the opposition leaders are more inclined to do so, who do not want other party colleagues to give their opponents their ears. The clear example could be the Andalusian PSOE.

Socialist sources in Andalusia point out that “it is essential to establish a party position” that can contribute to “help” the Government. That the PSOE contributes to “orienting” the Executive. And that the PP has its own internal discussion. But other federations like Castilla La Mancha see it diametrically different. “There cannot be a single position because this is not an ideological but a territorial debate.” This is recognized even in the government itself. They admit that the socialist barons “are going to continue divided” on the new model of autonomic financing. Because in addition, they point out, in just over a year and a half they have regional elections.

The new system is in the kitchen. And the Ministry of Finance will serve the first course next November with the presentation of the protected population criterion. “The skeleton”, as defined by socialist sources. Population is the crux of the funding issue. Communities with more density ask that the model respond to this concept. The least populated believe that the axis must be the cost of the service. The debate also converges on the need to address local financing and organization of competences regional and municipal.

After the first act of November, negotiations will begin in earnest, but there are no guarantees that this legislature can be completed. A regional president took for granted that “it will not be finished.” The worst funded communities were confident that it would be resolved but the government itself is skeptical. They maintain that it does not depend only on them and that putting together the pact is very complicated. The PP, they point from the party, it will not be easy for there to be a unanimous position of its barons either. For Pablo Casado, they add, it will be more complicated because a president does not have the same authority as a head of the opposition.

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