The negotiation seemed easier, but the deadline to present the coalition – which concludes tonight – has been complicated and a storm broke out between the national PP and the Basque. Sources around Alfonso Alonso, leader of the popular in Euskadi and candidate of the party to lehendakari, say that the Number Three of the PP, Ana Beltrán, asked him by whatsapp at twelve on Thursday night to be presented this Friday in Madrid to sign the coalition agreement with Citizens for the Basque elections on April 5. Alonso, who has not been invited at any time to participate in the negotiations, refused to go to sign an agreement whose conditions he knew only through the press and which he does not share.
The leader of the Basque popular believes that it is “unassuming” to deliver the second place of the electoral lists by Bizkaia and Álava to Cs, a condition of the pact that the Basque popular have learned because this has been announced publicly by the formation of Inés Arrimadas. The Basque PP currently has a national deputy, nine deputies in the Basque Parliament, 11 in the general meetings and 55 councilors. Citizens, nothing.
The Basque PP has clarified the conditions in which the call of Alonso took place this Friday in Madrid after El Mundo advanced, citing sources from the direction of the national PP, that their leader in Euskadi had given them seedling and that they could not communicate with him since Thursday. According to Alonso’s environment it is false. “Since yesterday afternoon he is waiting for their calls to be answered at the highest address of the PP and the only person who has contacted him this Friday has been Ana Beltrán.”
The deadline to present the coalition ends this Friday, but they have until March 1 to present the lists. The popular Basques claim to the national leadership of their party that the negotiation “fits reality” and they are not given positions to a formation that now has no representation in the territory and that “neither would it be if it were presented alone.” They say they learned about the statements of the secretary of the parliamentary group of Citizens, José María Espejo, of the pact on the distribution on the lists and maintain that they are not willing to give in: “We will not pass through there.” The popular Basques are “on fire” and warn that they are “going to fight” while Genoa insists that it is they who have the last word.
Sources in Genoa admitted Thursday that they lacked “talk to many people” and that Citizens had “advanced” in the announcements. The deal agreement on the lists negotiated in Madrid has outraged the popular Basques, who insist they have been working on a project in Euskadi for years while Cs is irrelevant in the territory. The national teams of both parties negotiate against the clock to overcome these discrepancies and to present the coalition in time.
Both formations have overcome two other pitfalls in negotiation. The first, the ordago launched by Inés Arrimadas, who suggested, at the beginning of the talks, that they agreed to an electoral coalition in the Basque Country, Galicia and Catalonia, or there would be none. Finally, the spokeswoman for Citizens assumed the rejection of Alberto Núñez Feijóo, who governs Galicia with an absolute majority, although her party warns that she will do the same in Catalonia, where she obtained 36 deputies against 4 of the popular. The other obstacle was the commitment to the foralism of the popular Basques. Citizens have always criticized him, but he had already assumed it in Navarra, until now the only successful coalition between both parties.
The negotiation for the coalition, in any case, has triggered tension in the already rarefied relationship between the national PP and the Basque PP. Alonso, who supported Soraya Sáenz de Santamaría in the primaries, was confirmed as a candidate of the popular lehendakari after several party leaders refused to ask repeated questions from journalists. The Basque PP came to convene a board of directors to activate the electoral machinery and pressure Genoa. Finally, the popular president, Pablo Casado, confirmed his candidacy to Alonso. The former Minister of Health belongs to the moderate sector of the party, away from the circle of José María Aznar and FAES that has landed in the PP after the departure of Mariano Rajoy.