Change in elevation
A president of the Generalitat to whom the leader of his party passes the baton while he is interned in the prison of Estremera and half a coalition government formed with talks from the prison of Lledoners. This is the anomalous situation that Catalan politics is going through and that, despite the turbulent times, opens a new stage today.
Finally, the constitution of the government of ERC and Junts will be made despite the tensions between the two main pro-independence parties and executing a renewal of leadership forced by the situation. A relay forced fundamentally by the acceleration of October 2017 and the intervention of the Generalitat with 155, prison and exile, which culminated in a government without leadership. An executive that became a battlefield and two political spaces with soldiers who have negotiated until today conditioned by the many pending accounts. Wounded soldiers and retaliated generals capable of having lunch together in prison but talking about the gender of angels or literally - in the midst of the breakdown of negotiations between ERC and Junts - about the extravagant personality of Ramon Franco, the adventurous and contradictory brother of the dictator.
The negotiation of the investiture agreement has been hectic and in both parties there are now personalities who are vigilant with the pact, who will express themselves with more or less intensity depending on how the internal leadership evolves, the successes of the Government and the response of the State to a negotiating table where it will not even be easy to establish the agenda.
What are the successes that an autonomous government led by a pro-independence coalition could have today?
To begin with, the first collective success would be to reduce misleading words and speak clearly, with a crude truth synonymous with respect for citizens. Addressing a tired public opinion without euphemisms, where there is a sovereigntist majority that has not disappeared or been reduced, despite the difficulties and the multiple reasons for disengaging from politics.
The success of the Government will depend on its ability to manage the country out of the health crisis and its harsh economic consequences, which the citizens are experiencing every day. Catalonia needs a government that manages with excellent objectives and does not miss a single opportunity to defend the interests of citizens wherever it is needed, but it will not be easy because the CUP has only guaranteed a two-year parliamentary majority. A CUP that may not have been amused by the name of the Minister of Economy with whom it will have to negotiate the budgets.
New times have come with a young, temperate president, with a vocation to occupy the office in the Palau de la Generalitat, and with a new leader in the opposition who has brought about a change of tone. Everything remains to be done and the country needs to be governed on a day-to-day basis without forgetting the fundamental problems. If progress is to be made in the dialogue, the Spanish government will have to risk approving the pardons, even if the courts threaten to overrule it. It is the necessary condition to open a productive dialogue and in any case it is not a point of arrival but a point of departure.
The Aragonès government will not have it easy. The distrust between partners will not disappear in a day of negotiation with Sànchez, nor has Junts completed its process of moving from being a movement around Puigdemont to being a cohesive party with a clear ideological corpus. It will be significant to see who becomes the vice president of Junts after Elsa Artadi has preferred to reserve herself in the Barcelona City Council, Josep Rius has been left out of the Government and Laura Borràs awaits the announced judicial shake-up from the Parliament.
FROM MOVEMENT TO PARTY
Jordi Sànchez explains this Sunday in the ARA that "a gesture of authority" was needed to close the agreement with ERC, and it is he who is piloting the participation of Junts in a coalition where the absence of the leaders who piloted the birth of Junts from Brussels is very significant. The undercurrent is strong and a new stage is opening within the pro-independence movement. ERC arrives at the Generalitat disciplined and with a young but solid leadership. Its partners, Junts, are in full transformation and the step together with the young puigdemontistas may involve the return of some of the classics of Convergència by the hand of Sànchez, today with a strong leadership and the credibility of prison. Sànchez has politics in his veins and today has a broad capacity for movement in a party in formation. The first gestures of the formation of a government make him the key to the reconstruction of the exconvergent space.
Both have two years to rehearse the next step of sovereignty, once the negotiating table shows the limitations of Spanish nationalism and independence is able to assess its strengths.