Sunday, June 23, 2024

Spain’s ‘Frankenstein Coalition’ puts democracy at risk

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Is Spain facing the end of the democracy it regained half a century ago?

It’s not just foreigners who keep asking such curious questions. As 2023 comes to an end, we Spaniards are asking ourselves:

This concern stems from the elections held this year and the government that resulted from them. The fact that it’s called the “Frankenstein Coalition” tells you why so many of us are concerned.

In November, Pedro Sánchez was again sworn in as Prime Minister, or “President of the Government” according to Spanish custom. His socialist party, the Spanish Party (PSOE), did not win the election, while the conservative People’s Party, which won the most votes, was unable to muster a parliamentary majority. PSOE was able to do that.

It didn’t matter. The question is what kind of coalition government Mr. Sanchez has assembled.

There are three main arguments against the Sánchez government. First, let’s address the criticisms of his coalition partners.

Sánchez crossed all the red lines by incorporating into his ruling coalition a party that openly called for the liquidation of constitutional Spain. In contrast to what is happening in other European countries, such as Germany, Italy, France and Portugal, Spain recognizes alliances that openly advocate the abrogation of the Spanish constitution.

It just didn’t happen before.

Sánchez became the first Spanish leader to form a governing alliance with a party that openly opposed the constitution since the death of dictator Francisco Franco in 1975 and the adoption of the constitution in 1978.

It set off political alarm bells.

In fact, when Sanchez first broached the idea in 2016, PSOE’s traditional leaders ousted him from leadership. They were the first to characterize the project as the “Frankenstein League.”

But Sánchez came back and won the PSOE leadership election, and in June 2018 he secured a parliamentary majority with the support of a party that openly opposes the constitution and consensus that formed the basis of post-Franco Spain’s democracy. successfully organized.

That coalition also included Podemos (loosely translated as “Yes, We Can”, which Barack Obama himself stole from Cesar Chavez and the United Farm Workers’ “Si, se puede!”). Podemos was founded in 2014 by former Spanish advisers to Venezuela’s Marxist dictator Hugo Chávez. It wasn’t just that it was openly communist. In particular, it was decided to challenge the role played by the left in shaping the post-Franco consensus on key issues since 1978.

Sánchez’s 2018 coalition also included ERC (Esquerra Republicana de Catalunya), a separatist party in Catalonia’s eastern region whose leader was jailed for the 2017 attempted secession of Catalonia from Spain. Ta.

However, what most troubled Spanish society was the agreement with Bildou, which had taken over the reins from the Basque terrorist organization ETA. For Americans who know the situation in Ireland, Bildou is the Spanish equivalent of Sinn Féin.

These two parties were not part of the government and had no ministers, but only supported the Sánchez government.

The 2018 coalition would not have been enough to reach a parliamentary majority today. So this year, Mr. Sánchez created a new partner, Jants per Catalunya (Jantts), or Together for Catalunya, to maintain the power he seeks.

Support for Mr. Sánchez, another separatist party whose leader is a fugitive from the Spanish judiciary and lives in Belgium, is based on important preconditions. In other words, the dismantling of the rule of law in Spain.

The concessions Sanchez makes to this new partner lead directly to opposition from the second group.

Even before this new partner was born, Sanchez was paying a heavy price to ensure his partner’s support. Podemos joined the government, and its leader held the position of deputy prime minister. This made Spain the only democratic country with a communist in its government.

Meanwhile, the ERC went ahead with plans to ban Spanish from classrooms in Catalonia. Bildoo then profited from keeping ETA terrorists in prison in exchange for support to the government’s budget.

But now the concessions Yuntz has squeezed out of Sanchez have gone even further. In exchange for seven votes in parliament, without which Sanchez would not have been able to return as prime minister, the party received unconstitutional pardons for Jants leaders hiding abroad, etc. squeezed out concessions.

In another surprising concession, Sanchez agreed to begin proceedings to prosecute judges who might oppose the amendment, believing it to be unconstitutional.

Because in order to meet his partners’ demands, Mr. Sánchez must first dismantle the rule of law. And this is his third, most serious, and most worrying objection to Sanchez’s tendencies.

Until recently, voices in Venezuela warning of the deterioration of the country’s institutions under Chávez were silent. “Venezuela is not Cuba,” they said. Spain is also not Venezuela, but the result is the same, although it is more shocking to destroy a building with one blow than to destroy it with one blow.

Over the past five years, Sánchez has colonized Spain’s constitutional institutions, placing hitherto independent institutions in the hands of loyal collaborators and trying to force the constitution to say things it doesn’t say. It has encouraged “alternative uses of law.”

And without law, there is no democracy.

Daily Signal publishes a variety of viewpoints. Nothing written herein should be construed as representing the views of the Heritage Foundation.

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