Wednesday, 19 June 2019

The Town Halls are Decided (at least)

The famous mayor from 'Bienvenido Mr Marshall'
The town halls have now been occupied by the victors from the elections last month. Usually the party most voted, but sometimes an agreement between two or more groups sealed the deal – or in some cases, an arrangement was made by the party leaders in a quiet office in Madrid: you take x and we’ll have y.
The most remarked on deal happened in Spain’s capital city, where Manuela Carmena’s Ahora Madrid was the most voted, but Manuela has gone – ‘now I’m just another madrileña, she says. In her place, a coalition between the PP and the C’s with the Vox for the moment in dubious support. The new mayor is the PP candidate José Luis Martínez-Almeida, wants to close down the low-pollution ‘Madrid Centro’ scheme and to make (another) attempt to win the Olympic Games for the city, this time for 2032 (Madrid’s bid lost out in 2012, 2016 and 2020). The new mayor for Madrid has recognised that Manuela’s government has lowered the city debt and says he hopes to lower taxes accordingly. The new vice-mayor is Begoña Villacís from Ciudadanos.
In Barcelona, Ada Colau managed to hold on as mayoress.
Vox meanwhile has been instrumental in bringing right-wing corporations to six capital cities: Madrid, Zaragoza, Granada, Palencia, Teruel and Badajoz. What do they get in return? The party says they may release the secret document signed by them with the PP if they feel that they haven’t got whatever it was the PP had agreed to.
One party, even more extreme than Vox, namely España 2000 (Wiki), has taken Los Santos de la Humosa: a town in the Madrid Region.
Finally, there are fifteen cities where the so-called ‘Columbus Trio’ couldn’t agree, allowing rather the election of more centrist mayors. These cities include Burgos, Huesca, Jaén and Cáceres.   
In the smaller towns and villages, where everybody knows everyone, the town halls are more to do with local personalities than with far-off leaders and politics. Spain remains a practical country at heart.

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