This post is also available in: Español (Spanish)
Last weekend we witnessed a sad spectacle inside the Spanish political scene. Pedro Sanchez, the leader of the PSOE, the Spanish Social-democratic Party, became the focus of daily’s columns and editorials, both in Spain and outside its borders, which showed astonished the sequence of events.
The reason was a conspiracy within the Spanish Socialist Party to end Sanchez’s leadership, due to the continuing loss of votes, election after election, reflecting the progressive abandonment of their electorate and which seems to have no ground. The elections´ results under Pedro Sanchez direction are counted by defeats, each one even more severe than the last.
On the other hand, the fact which became the main issue of his leadership: the absurd debate about the refusal to support any attempt to form cabinet in Spain, unless he might be the one to preside it. The source of it, has been his personal hatred to Mariano Rajoy (PP), winner of the elections: Sanchez rejected a grand coalition in the style of our European partners, to which he was been repeatedly invited; neither by abstaining in the PM´s voting. The PSOE has been a ruling party in Spain for 40 years and has held office for almost 22. Can a party like it sustain its great debate over who hates Rajoy the most?
Pedro Sanchez has been considered, even among his PSOE´ fellows, as a danger to Spain. This is the reason why most of the citizens have taken for good this internal plot against him, whose only virtue is his willingness to die killing.
Traditionally in Spain, the internal crises have been more forgiven to the left than to the right wing. But the current situation was unprecedented and certainly bizarre. In this quarrel, the socialists have consumed too much political credit, because conspiring against their leadership, it is a very serious operation. While it is true they lacked of any space for workarounds or interim solutions: they have too much mistaken during the last year.
The plotters were aware that there was no alternative to the governability of Spain that allowing the cabinet formation of the largest party, which is none other than that PP. And once the cabinet were formed, while they sit on the parliament´ opposition bench parliament, they would start the Socialist Party´ rebuilding, in order to regain the trust of their traditional voters.
Sanchez did not hesitate to violate the party´ internal rules and, what is even worse, the due loyalty to his fellow peers, until some point where he was about to fracture the Spanish socialism. By encouraging the hatred to the PP, the “terrible political right” according to his words, the socialist has not realized that the political Manichaeism has ceased to exist in Spain. Meanwhile, he insisted on negotiating secretly with the populists and separatists an extravagant, illogical route, which was unknown until last week hidden for his own fellow party members, who of course, did not support it.
Even his once few allies, the liberal party Cuidadanos (C’s), reminded him how absurd his intentions were: an exacerbated ambition and obsession to become PM, counting with the least number of seats in the Parliament that his party had never obtained.
The socialist Sánchez represented as anyone what Baruch Spinoza said in the seventeenth century, “the only thing that is common to all animals, including man, is the survival instinct.” After all these months of endless forward rush, it has become clear that any remote cabinet formation which Pedro Sanchez could have formed, it would be based on his own political survival.
Neither the young Spanish democracy, nor the PSOE militancy can afford the party breakdown at the hands of a leader like Pedro Sanchez, obsessed with the power even at the cost of breaking the party. He has lack of state meaningless. The PSOE has been crucial in affirming the Spanish democracy and it must remain so. First, out of respect for its own history and because of millions of citizens are declared Social-Democrats. And second, because is their moral obligation to the Spaniards to abort the system harassment and demolition´ operation designed from the populist far-left, rather than participate in it and naively hand over power to them, which would end the PSOE once and for good.
The more realistic (and Social-democratic) PSOE´ faction reacted against the abusive use made by Sanchez of the party leadership position, with his cessions made to the populists and his incomprehensible sympathy for the separatists. The future of the PSOE goes through a peaceful reestablishment sitting at the opposition´ bench, from where they must serve to Spain´s stability and growth. Spain and the socialist party, its members and voters, need a mature and united PSOE, which is able to offer an alternative.