The candidate for the presidency of the Region of Murcia, Fernando López Miras, has not managed to obtain the simple majority he needed to be sworn in as president in the second vote of the investiture session. There were no indications that the opposite might be the case. After falling in the first vote on Friday due to Vox’s resounding refusal, the popular leader needed at least the abstention of the ultra-rightists to revalidate the command of San Esteban.

The party led by José Ángel Antelo has added its votes to those of PSOE and Podemos -a total of 24- to surpass the 21 popular votes. The voting process, in the Patio de los Ayuntamientos, has been cold and tense, and López Miras, after making his defeat official, has left his seat together with his spokesperson, Joaquín Segado.

López Miras: “Vox’s tacticism can lead the Region of Murcia to new elections”

In his speech, after 11 in the morning, the popular candidate Fernando López Miras has stressed that this investiture session was not “just another procedure” and has once again stressed the idea that it is not “a debate on positions but of programs ”in reference Vox. “The Region of Murcia cannot stop its growth”, he added.

“No one saw coming after 28M that this blockade could occur with this overwhelming victory by the PP against Vox,” said the acting head of the Murcian Executive. “Look at the happy faces that socialist and Podemos deputies have today. Far from the wall against sanchismo, they offer themselves today as their maximum opportunity ”, he snapped at the far-right formation.

López Miras recalled that “Vox’s electoral tacticism can lead the Region of Murcia to new elections.” “The hand is still outstretched. We want Vox’s policies and commitments to be reflected in that lone PP government”, said the candidate while lamenting that in other autonomous communities, “such as in the Balearic Islands”, their governments are being set up unlike the Region of Murcia.

Pepe Vélez (PSOE): “The agreement with Vox will be taken out of the drawer at the next investiture session”

The socialist candidate, Pepe Vélez, has defended his refusal to invest López Miras: “We said no out of responsibility and in coherence with our principles and values. The Region shows unbearable rates and you are the ones who are largely responsible”.

Vélez has reproached the Popular Party that “in the Region there is no more school failure, poverty rate and wage gap. We cannot continue having the largest debt and deficit in Spain”. The socialist has described the investiture session as a “little theater”, since “we all know that the agreement with Vox will be taken out of the drawer at the next investiture session”: “He is not defending the interests of the Region, this is a campaign strategy for the national ones”, he denounced.

José Ángel Antelo (Vox): “You are an opening act for Mr. Feijóo”

“The polls asked for a stable, serious and coalition government and I called it the same election night,” the leader of Vox in the Region, José Ángel Antelo, addressed the popular candidate. “But you did not reply until after three weeks and we suffered a veto,” he added. Antelo has vindicated Vox as “a responsible party” and has detailed the twelve-point agreement along with the demand for the vice presidency and two councils for a future coalition government. Among these points is the suppression or modification of the Ley del Mar Menor, the promotion of an increase in the irrigated area or “the integrity of the Tajo-Segura transfer”.

The Vox leader has once again recalled that the López Miras government “failed to comply with the programmatic agreement reached four years ago.” “You are an opening act for Mr. Feijóo”, he reminded him in reference to the debate that the national leader of the PP will hold tonight with Pedro Sánchez at Atresmedia.

María Marín (Podemos): “This is an operation that could well be called Ingenio”

The spokesperson for Podemos in the Regional Assembly, María Marín, has shared Vélez’s vision and has described this plenary session as the “second act of comedy”: “This week Vox did not open the door so that Feijoó could say in the electoral debate tonight that is a party of the center”.

Marín recalled that PP and Vox have already formed a government in more than a hundred municipalities: “Vox is the crutch of the PP and its squire”, he defined, and pointed out that the PP is going to use Vox to repeal the Law on Minor Sea. “If there is a program agreement, it will be by withdrawing the Ley del Mar Menor, Antelo has just said it. It is an operation that could well be called Ingenuity”, points out the spokeswoman for the purple party, alluding to the lobby agrarian denier of the relationship between the degradation of the Mar Menor and the agricultural exploitations of the Campo de Cartagena. “It is with the lobby from agribusiness with whom this three-way pact already exists: PP, Vox and agribusiness”, he defended.

Joaquín Segado (PP): “Regarding the Mar Menor, not a step back”

The PP spokesman in the Regional Assembly, Joaquín Segado, has denied that the popular ones are going to accept an agreement with Vox that involves repealing the Mar Menor Law: “Regarding the Mar Menor, not one step back, that is our condition” has underlined.

He has reproached Vox for a “lack of seriousness” in its programmatic proposal: “It is not serious to put in a document that they want to repeal or modify the Ley del Mar Menor. Let’s say that they want exactly with the Law, to repeal is one thing and to modify is quite another”.

Segado reminded Antelo that they have been “weeks” trying to get the far-right party to rule on the document of 88 measures that they were sent as a government proposal: “They talk about their concern about the program and say they want a vice-presidency and two ministries . What they want are armchairs, nor do they specify the powers ”, he denounced

The spokesman for the popular has reminded Vox that the previous legislature “is not comparable” to this one: “The previous legislature had the possibility of a majority of the left and center-right. In this legislature there is no alternative, only the blockade of Vox ”.

Notorious similarities and “outstretched hand”, but without investiture by López Miras

Both formations have starred in an intense round of parliamentary sessions that began last Thursday and which has been marked by fruitless negotiations and a scarce predisposition to understanding. In the words of López Miras himself and the deputy spokesman for Vox, Rubén Martínez Alpáñez, the two parties called, on Friday, with “hands outstretched”, to a new round of talks over the weekend. The truth is that there have been, but in them, according to close sources, there was no progress because, according to what they say, the popular leader, Alberto Núñez Feijóo, does not want to get to the debate that he will hold on Monday night with Pedro Sánchez in Atresmedia with an agreement with Vox freshly cooked in the Region of Murcia.

Throughout the inauguration, the messages and the tone transmitted by the PP and Vox have had noticeable similarities. At no time have they seemed to be close to reaching an agreement that would allow the situation to be unblocked. The popular only valued carrying out a programmatic agreement, along the lines of the Balearic Islands, without sacrificing positions in the Executive; those of Antelo, for their part, and alleging their distrust of the PP as a result of disagreements during the last legislature, claimed the opposite: they have expressed in each press conference, in their interventions during the plenary session, their firm will to obtain the leadership in any of the future government departments.

The shadow of electoral repetition

With no agreement in sight, the possibility of an electoral repetition begins to be tangible. The table of the Regional Assembly has, as of today, a period of two months to hold a second investiture session. Presumably this will take place at the end of July, after the general elections.

In the press conference after the failure of the investiture, the popular spokesman, Joaquín Segado, has been forceful in the face of the failed vote, and also in view of the future that may hold for the community if both formations continue without reaching an agreement: “Vox He has positioned himself, today, as the person responsible for wanting to lead this Region to a new electoral call. He has proposed, at the last minute, an imprecise and illogical agreement”. However, the popular ones continue, he has said, with an “outstretched hand”. “We have spent weeks,” Segado continued, “requesting that a negotiating table be set up. We present a document of 88 points that has not yet had a response. We will study the one that has been proposed to us in depth. The blockade is bad for the Region”.

For his part, José Ángel Antelo has lashed out harshly against the presidential candidate, suggesting that his decisions are motivated by the national political scene: “It has been a shame, nonsense. Vox wants a government in the Region of Murcia, and there is another party that is thinking about the electoral calculation,” said the far-right leader.

The left clearly envisions a pact after 23J

PSOE and Podemos have maintained the position they have been defending since the beginning of the investiture. Both have also mentioned tonight’s electoral debate. “The only ambition of the PP in the Region is to remain in power at all costs, whatever the cost. The two parties are using the Assembly to campaign for their national bosses. Above all, Feijóo. As of July 23 there will be an agreement ”, Vélez has expressed.

Along the same lines, the spokeswoman for Podemos, María Marín, has described today’s short session as the “second act of a pantomime”. “Tonight, Feijóo will go to the debate to say that the PP is a center party, transversal. But it doesn’t strain. We will meet again in the last weeks of July to carry out the real investiture, which has already been agreed between PP, Vox and the lobby of agribusiness. The price to pay will be, above all, the Mar Menor”, ​​he concluded.

Two investiture sessions in 2019

In the previous legislature, López Miras was finally sworn in at the end of July 2019, two months after the elections were called. On that occasion he was appointed president in the second investiture debate, since in the first one – held on July 3 and 4 – he did not get the majority of parliamentary support he needed after the negotiations that he held on two sides with Ciudadanos and Vox.

For the second investiture session, the PP agreed with Cs to enter the coalition government, while with Vox it reached a programmatic agreement, which the far-right party assures that they did not comply. On the other hand, Abascal has indicated on different occasions that he does not have “confidence” in López Miras since after the motion of censure that he suffered in March 2021, the head of the Murcian Executive now in office included in his Government “fugitives” from this far-right party, as was the Minister of Education and Culture, Mabel Campuzano.


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