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Final campaign week for European and local elections as parties try to sway voters

Independence debate at center of most unionist and pro-independence campaigns in Catalonia

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19 May 2019 07:20 PM

by

ACN|Barcelona

As campaigning for the local and European elections enters its last week, candidates attempt to convince undecided voters ahead of the May 26 vote.

Speaking at an event on Sunday in Tarragona, the spokesperson for unionist party Ciutadans (Cs) in Parliament, Carlos Carrizosa, described a vote for his party as the “only tactical unionist vote possible” since he said that the Catalan Socialists, unlike Cs, would negotiate agreements with pro-independence parties.

Carrizosa also asked Tarragonans to vote for his party’s local candidate, Rubén Viñuales, to prevent the city from becoming a platform for pro-independence parties to spread their views, while in Barcelona his party has given support to former French Prime Minister Manuel Valls’ candidacy.

Socialist Miquel Iceta also brought up the Catalan pro-independence parties on Sunday, following their parliamentary vote blocking him from taking up the post of Speaker of Spain’s Senate as designated by President Pedro Sánchez.

Iceta, at an event with Barcelona hopeful Jaume Collboni, affirmed that a vote for the Socialists in the local and European elections was the only way to respond to “intolerance and tension.” To this effect, Collboni also stated that a vote for him was the only way of guaranteeing a unionist, progressive and well-managed local government.

Former People’s Party mayor of Badalona, Xavier García Albiol, extended a hand to Socialists in asking for their vote, and promised that he would not allow for anyone from Esquerra Republicana or far-left CUP pro-independence parties to become mayor.

Meanwhile, Barcelona en Comú’s Ada Colau has said that Esquerra Republicana’s candidate for Barcelona, Ernest Maragall, will likely “bend” to the pressure of lobbies and criticized him for having worked mainly as a professional politician. Colau is known for her days as an affordable and stable housing advocate and was accompanied at the event by Podemos leader Pablo Iglesias.

Jailed pro-independence Esquerra leader Oriol Junqueras reiterated via videoconference on Sunday his view that his imprisonment is unfair and that votes for Esquerra in both local and European elections will be “liberating.”

At a Junts per Catalunya meeting on Sunday, jailed candidate for Barcelona Quim Forn also said via videoconference that he thought his party could be decisive in the elections while former President Carles Puigdemont said, from Waterloo, Belgium that his party could not afford to have fewer votes than the “repressors.”   

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  • Socialist candidate for Barcelona Jaume Collboni and Laia Bonet wave at a campaign event on May 19 (Sílvia Jardí/ACN)

  • Socialist candidate for Barcelona Jaume Collboni and Laia Bonet wave at a campaign event on May 19 (Sílvia Jardí/ACN)

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