Far-right party's xenophobic comment on left-wing MP sparks outrage
Gerardo Pisarello's criticism to king for "constitutional disobedience" prompts Vox to demand politician "be kicked in his ass back to Argentina"
On Saturday, the anti-austerity politician criticized the Spanish king Felipe for "constitutional disobedience" for taking sides after the Spanish government denied him a visit to Barcelona.
Vox's official Twitter account reacted to Pisarello's remarks by demanding him "be kicked in his ass back to Argentina."
Pisarello, who was born in Argentina and has lived in Spain for 25 years, is now MP in the Spanish congress and member of its bureau, after a stint as Barcelona's local councilor (2015-2019).
"When a foreigner who tarnishes the flag and backs a separatist coup sits in the congress' bureau, what is logical is that he tarnishes the bureau and attacks the king who fought the coup," read the Vox tweet. "Everything is logical, except for us not having kicked his ass back to Argentina."
In a further response, the left-wing politician, member of a party that usually avoids siding in the independence debate, reminded that he is "son of a lawyer killed for facing Videla's dictatorship, grandson of Andalusian republicans and father to two Catalan republican youngsters."
"You will have to do something else apart from barking and charging to achieve that we give up 'the terrible obsession of thinking.'"
"You will have to do something else apart from barking and charging to achieve that we give up 'the terrible obsession of thinking'"
Gerardo Pisarello · MP in Spanish congress
Vox's xenophobic comments sparked the outrage and solidarity to Pisarello of a number of Catalan politicians, including the Catalan parliament speaker, Roger Torrent; Barcelona's mayor, Ada Colau; the Catalan vice president, Pere Aragonès; and the leader of Junts per Catalunya in congress, Laura Borràs.
"Fascism is the worst threat to democracy," twetted Colau.
"Facing hatred and racism, democracy and republican fraternity, antifascist solidarity," reacted Aragonès.
Controversial denial of king's visit
The incident occurred after the Spanish government denied king Felipe a visit to Barcelona for an annual judicial event on Friday, on the grounds of "guaranteeing the security" of the monarch.
The main right-wing Spanish parties, the conservative associations of judges, and the leadership of Spain's judiciary (CGPJ) were infuriated at what they interpreted as a "veto" on Felipe.
On Friday, it was leaked that Felipe had called the president of CGPJ to tell him that "he would have liked" to attend.
This prompted two Spanish government ministers –member of the junior coalition partner Podemos Unidas– to ask the crown "political neutrality" as established in the constitution.
Pisarello also reacted to the king's move, saying "Felipe's call is an open act of constitutional disobedience, inacceptable for a monarchy subject to the democratic principle."
"Following this path, it will be the arrogance and ineptitude of the Bourbons those hastening their end."
The Catalan vice president Aragonès said that Felipe had "allied" with the "judicial right wing" to maneuver against the Spanish executive.