Friday, June 10, 2011

Impossible marriages

Three parties were involved in the elections in Bigastro; the Socialistas, the PP (conservatives) and the Unión Popular Liberal y Centrista ( right wing liberals) and none of them won enough seats to hold an overall majority. That meant two of the three parties would have to form some sort of pact if they wanted to take full control of the town.

Normally it would be almost inconceivable that the socialists and the conservatives, who are after all at opposite ends of the political spectrum, could ever work together but in local politics you never know. The most likely pacts would have to be between one of the two main parties and the liberals at the centre.

We know from reports of many council meetings that there is no love lost between Murcia and the Socialists. He is the one largely responsible for the former mayor and in some cases the current mayor appearing in court, so a pact with them would be almost beyond belief.

Murcia was spokesperson for the PP up to a month or so before the election when they voted him out and he lost his seat at council so there is possibly not a lot of love between him and them as well. However, politically Murcia is a lot closer to the conservatives than the socialists. So if any deals were to be made, those two were going to be the most likely candidates in spite of the fact that the PP said in their campaign that they would not form a pact with Murcia. However, as we all know, politician's promises only last as long as Spanish bread.

In the newspapers today we read that, Raúl Valerio Medina, acting mayor and PSOE candidate for mayor of Bigastro said that Charo Bañuls, PP candidate "has been kidnapped by her party" and has refused to establish any discussions with his party to establish governance of the town.

Valerio Medina talked yesterday about the negotiations that have taken place regarding the formation of the new corporation. He pointed out that we need to bear in mind that the Socialists actually won the election - in case anyone has forgotten - with a relative majority of 6 councillors against the PP’s 5. The third party led by Aurelio Murcia have 2 councillors.

Valerio is of course aware that negotiations between the PP and Murcia are almost at a conclusion and that they are close to an agreement. The acting mayor went on to explain that he had approval from his party to enter into negotiations with the PP and has tried unsuccessfully to make contact with Charo Bañuls since the 23rd May.

At first Bañuls showed interest, but the meetings did not materialize including the one scheduled for last Friday. Valerio therefore claims that ""Charo Bañuls has been kidnapped by her party" and adds that she has refused to talk to the PSOE saying that a pact between them would not work. He goes on to say that the PP are putting the interests of the political party over the needs of Bigastro.

Talking about other options, Valerio said that the PSOE did reluctantly have a meeting with Aurelio Murcia for the Unión Popular Liberal y Centrista party which they knew in advance would come to nothing. Valerio says that it is an impossible love between them - that is probably an understatement!

The acting mayor is now pinning his hopes on the PP councillors voting with their consciences; the ballot for mayor will after all made in secret. As he says, even after Saturday, there is a possibility that councillors representing 80% of the town will be able to win over those representing only 50%.

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