Catalunya en Comú party elects new leadership
Barcelona mayor Ada Colau and MP Xavier Domènech to head coalition of leftwing and green parties
Barcelona mayor Ada Colau and MP Xavier Domènech have been chosen to lead the Catalunya en Comú political party, after winning 64% of the votes from among the party members on Tuesday.
Catalunya en Comú was founded in 2016 with the support of leftwing and green political parties, following the success of Colau’s Barcelona en Comú platform that saw her elected mayor of the Catalan capital in 2015 on an agenda of social justice.
Domènech and Colau will now head the party leadership along with 18 other members who were on the same ticket. The remaining 10 places in the 30-member party leadership will be split between the next two most voted candidacies.
In all, some 3,260 of the 9,088 members registered to vote took part, a turnout of 35%, with Domènech and Colau’s ticket gaining 2,099 votes, or 64.9% of the votes cast. The results will be officially announced on July 7.
Membership split on independence issue
Catalunya en Comú decided not to take sides in the recent political conflict in Catalonia, aligning with neither the pro-independence or unionist camps in the Parliament, a reflection of how its membership is split on the issue.
In fact, Colau and Domènech’s manifesto made no mention of the process to achieve independence, while the two candidacies that will make up the party leadership are openly opposed to Catalonia seceding from Spain.
Nevertheless, Catalunya en Comú, which is also allied with the Podemos party of Pablo Iglesias, supports the right to self-determination of Catalan voters in the form of a binding referendum on independence agreed with the Spanish government.
The party has also been critical of the imprisonment of Catalan pro-independence leaders, who have been in jail since October’s referendum and the declaration of independence that followed.