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Spanish Socialists propose a “territorial reform” to better fit Catalonia

The Secretary General of the Spanish Socialist Party (PSOE), Alfredo Pérez Rubalcaba, sent a letter to the President of the Spanish Parliament, Jesús Posada, asking him to create “a parliamentary body to talk about the renovation of the territorial model”. This was one of the conclusions of last week’s meeting between Rubalcaba and the Catalan Socialist Party (PSC), which is part of the PSOE. The final objective is to push for a broad Constitutional reform to create a true federal Spain and better fit Catalonia, providing an alternative from the current status quo or independence. However, the initiative faces a negative answer from the People’s Party (PP), which runs the Spanish Government and holds an absolute majority in the Parliament and Senate.

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13 January 2014 07:13 PM

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ACN

Madrid (ACN).- The Secretary General of the Spanish Socialist Party (PSOE), Alfredo Pérez Rubalcaba, sent a letter to the President of the Spanish Parliament, Jesús Posada, asking him to create “a parliamentary body to talk about the renovation of the territorial model”.  This was one of the conclusions of last week’s meeting between Rubalcaba and Pere Navarro, Secretary General of the Catalan Socialist Party (PSC), which is part of the PSOE. The final objective is to push for a broad Constitutional reform to create a true federal Spain and better fit Catalonia, providing an alternative from the current status quo or independence. The PSC, which defended Catalonia’s right to self-determination as one of its main campaign promises in the last elections, has given up supporting the organisation of such a vote in order not to split with the PSOE. In exchange, the Spanish Socialists are pushing for a broad Constitutional and territorial reform. However, the initiative faces a negative answer from the People’s Party (PP), which runs the Spanish Government and holds an absolute majority in the Parliament and Senate. On top of this, the PSC proposed a temporary Constitutional patch, since the debate on a broad Constitutional and territorial reform could take years and they considered the Catalan independence debate cannot wait. Nonetheless, the PSOE ruled out this formula and insisted they were only considering a broad Constitutional reform.


The letter, signed by Rubalcaba as President of the Socialist Group at the Spanish Parliament, points out that the Chamber “is the ideal place to promote a great consensus that would update what was achieved 35 years ago” through the Constitution of 1978. Rubalcaba asks Posada to be the person to promote such an “indispensable dialogue”, as President of the Parliament. The news about the letter was first published by the Barcelona-based newspaper La Vanguardia and later confirmed by the Socialists.

Rubalcaba wanted Posada to include in the immediate agenda “the creation of a body”, “following the agreement between the parliamentary groups”, which could become a non-permanent committee or a sub-committee within the Constitutional Affairs one. According to the Socialists, this body’s mission would be to make “a shared diagnosis” of the current territorial situation and find alternatives to “the two opposed tensions” affecting Spain’s current organisation in Autonomous Communities: recentralisation and independence.

According to the letter, this debate should allow “promoting the necessary agreements and favouring the renovation of the Constitutional pact on Spain’s territorial model”. For this reason, while the body would be engaged in this debate, it should be informed by the Spanish Government about the initiatives affecting the Autonomous Communities, such as those affecting the funding of the regional governments.

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  • Pere Navarro (left) and Alfredo Pérez Rubalcaba (right), last week in Barcelona (by P. Solà)

  • Pere Navarro (left) and Alfredo Pérez Rubalcaba (right), last week in Barcelona (by P. Solà)