Pablo Gómez – Madrid
The last time many Podemos leaders were in the Ministry of Health was in December 2014. Among them was Juan Carlos Monedero. They protested against the Government of Mariano Rajoy, who demanded that all hepatitis C patients have access to treatment. Five years later, some of them returned yesterday to this point of Madrid's Paseo del Prado. No banners or t-shirts; with jacket They did it to witness the inauguration of the leader of Podemos, Pablo Iglesias, as the new vice president of the Government. Among them, was also Monedero, smiling, waving right and left and visibly excited.
This Monday 13, marked in purple by those of Iglesias, was a happy day, in good words among the now partners. As if, suddenly, they had forgotten the harsh accusations that PSOE and Podemos launched before the summer, on the occasion of the failed investiture. Weeks before the disagreement materialized, when the negotiations had not yet been twisted, another episode took place that yesterday regained meaning and returned to the memory of its protagonists with a certain premonitory air. May 7, 2019, first meeting between Sánchez and Iglesias after 28-A. The socialist leader offered to his interlocutor two smaller portfolios and the Presidency of the Congress. Parallel to that talk, Sánchez's trust team walked to the Podemos delegation through La Moncloa, which was shown by the Council of Ministers room as its future location when they assumed the portfolios offered. Socialists and purples did not agree on the quota of armchairs that corresponded to each party and led the country to new elections. Today, five members of Unidos Podemos, with Iglesias in front, will sit in the chairs of that room that Sánchez's collaborators included in the "tour" monclovita.
The "Coletas" office
Of all those celebrated yesterday, it was the act of transfer of power from Iglesias that best symbolized the new stage facing the country after the formation of the first Coalition Executive since the recovery of democracy. «Second Vice President and Minister of Social Rights and 2030 Agenda». In gold letters on the wallet. The founding goal of the party that was created to meet the demands of 15-M was finally becoming reality. The new Health and Consumption holders, the socialist Salvador Illa and the leader of the United Left, Alberto Garzón, respectively, also took office. The focus, however, lit only Iglesias. Also around him revolved most of the expectation that filled the minister's assembly hall to the flag: “This looks like a congress, not an inauguration. I have never seen anything like it, ”acknowledged a house official. Because "the pigtails", as some public workers in the corridors already referred to him yesterday, will have his office in this building. The place that, paradoxes of history, hosted the headquarters of the vertical union during the dictatorship of Franco.
After receiving his portfolio from the also Vice President Carmen Calvo, he was the first to assume his responsibility. He did it between shouts of "Yes, you can" from a part of the audience. The song, emblem of Podemos, had already resonated in the last five years in Congress, the regional parliaments and the municipalities of change. Yesterday, for the first time, it could be heard in a ministry. It was the peak of the act. The access of its leader to the Government is a symbol for Podemos to the extent that it is hardly explainable the entry of a party like the purple in the Council of Ministers without the role played since 2014 by Iglesias. At this time the road has not been easy: shaken by internal tensions and by the splitting of the More Country by Íñigo Errejón, it has been the confidence of the bases that has been brandished by its secretary general to remain in the front line; noted by the results of 10-N, the worst since the creation of the party in a general election; and portrayed by the contradictions that in his speech and his newspaper archive has drawn the moderation of his own speech.
In his first words, Iglesias proved to have parked the most mitinera version of himself. Forgotten the megaphone times, the institutional profile is now imposed, with a low voice and measured verb. He said that it will be an "honor" to work with Vice President Calvo and thanked Sánchez's "generosity" and his success in setting up an "effective" team. He even paraphrased the president by stressing that the new Executive will have "many times, but only one word." It will be, he predicted, a "strong" cabinet, marked by "companionship" and "teamwork." It was set as a goal that the next decade be that of democratic constitutionalism, which makes Spain a reference when pursuing the objectives of the United Nations, with peace and the fight against climate change at the forefront. «To talk, ask first. Then listen », word of Antonio Machado to close his speech.
That it was not another takeover it was clear to take a look at the witnesses of the act. With six other ministers – Calvo, Duque, González Laya, Maroto, Díaz and Montero – wrapping up their fellow cabinet members. Also the president of the Congress, prominent socialists – especially the PSC, with Miquel Iceta at the head – and the staff of Podemos and the United Left. And among them, Purse, in the third row, which summed up better than anyone what, in his opinion, these days mean: "To resist is to win."