José María Aznar has reconciled with the leadership in the PP. It was an open secret that Pablo Casado, although he was his pupil, deeply disappointed him in his last stage as party leader. He himself was in charge of expressing it, in the middle of the campaign for the elections in Castilla y León, at a very heated rally despite the winter cold of January in Valladolid, when he stated that in Spain many clung to populism in the face of “the lack of a referent who to trust”, and acknowledged his doubts that Casado had a clear project for the country. After the internal crisis due to the Casado war with Isabel Díaz Ayuso, Aznar supported Alberto Núñez Feijóo to occupy the presidency of the PP, but six months after the Galician politician took over the leadership of the party, he also wanted to give him a public accolade . He had it prepared and he said it as soon as he spoke at the conference he gave this Friday with Feijóo at the closing ceremony of the FAES campus in Madrid. “We believe that you have all the conditions to be the next president and that it is desirable that you be the next president. And we are convinced and we will do everything possible to help you to be the next president ”, he told Feijóo, as if giving him his blessing.
Although Feijóo shows off his special complicity with the other former president of the PP Government, Mariano Rajoy, a Galician like him and with whom he has spent part of his vacations in Galicia this summer, he has also wanted to visualize that he feels heir to Aznar and that he has with your support, important in the hardest sectors of the right.
Aznar and Feijóo praised each other this Friday in their first joint public act, and they agreed on all the political approaches. Both have agreed to question the objectives of the ecological transition at this time of energy crisis as a result of the war in Ukraine. “The deadlines established in the international and internal energy transition agendas, however respectable they may be, with the promotion of renewables or decarbonization, are unfeasible. They are impossible. It is absolutely absurd to keep them. The energy transition objectives cannot be maintained and the opening of coal-fired plants cannot be maintained”, Aznar first defended.
“On the energy issue, I cannot agree more with President Aznar”, Feijóo later expressed, who has advocated “reset the energy transition plan” and has opened up to studying the use of fracking, an extraction technique that its detractors consider to pose a serious risk to health and the environment. “Of course, to reconsider it, yes”, he has reflected, although he has hesitated about doing it because he does not have “information on whether it is profitable or not”. In its plan to deal with the energy crisis made public a few weeks ago, the PP proposed in this line that the EU temporarily suspend the rights on CO₂ emissions.
Aznar and Feijóo have also shared the same analysis in the fiscal debate opened by the downward competition of the PP communities, as well as about economic policy. The former Prime Minister has charged against the tax on large fortunes prepared by the progressive Executive, which he has criticized as “characteristic of a disoriented and carnivorous left” and has advocated the increase of large fortunes in Spain. “When I read the figures… if there are only 200,000 rich people in Spain, it’s a misery for the rich! We need two million rich people!”, Aznar has defended, who believes that the country has to attract more investors by lowering taxes.
Feijóo, for his part, has come out in defense of the abolition of the Wealth Tax, despite the fact that the measure announced by Andalusia this week has opened the debate in the PP, and three popular communities maintain the validity of this tribute that taxes those who have assets of more than 700,000 euros without having their habitual residence. Feijóo has recalled that former socialist president José Luis Rodríguez Zapatero eliminated this tax (although he later recovered it at the end of his term). “Lowering taxes in the year 2206 was on the left. It turns out that in the year 22 it is the extreme right ”, he has complained. “Wealth tax does not exist in the EU, except for a small fee in Norway and outside the EU, in Switzerland. If you want, make people pay in the highest brackets [del IRPF]but do not make people pay double for the same thing every year”, considered the leader of the PP, leaving open the possibility of taxing more those who have more.
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Finally, the leader of the PP has formulated a more dramatic analysis than that of Aznar on the situation of the Spanish economy, emphasizing the high public debt and the threat of recession. “Either we make the economy grow, or we are going to have a lot of difficulties paying the interest on our debt,” warned Feijóo, who believes that “Spain, with this economic policy, cannot last five more years. A policy of this tenor is incompatible with the euro”. The leader of the opposition has been instilling fear over the Spanish economy since the opening of the political course at the end of August.
Feijóo has given the management of the Aznar Government as an example and has promised to continue his legacy if, as he believes, he reaches La Moncloa in 2023. “Now, from the point of view of the disorder of public accounts there is more disorder than in recent 15 or 20 years”, Feijóo reasoned. “Maybe that’s why it’s up to us,” he has expressed, referring to governing the country. The leader of the PP was committed to being in tune with Aznar and, in conclusion, has even ended up suggesting that he will ask him to help him if he reaches the Government, although he has left it up in the air how: “If it happens to us, I will tell the president Aznar to lend a hand”.
Sánchez insists on the protection of the social majority to overcome crises
The President of the Government, Pedro Sánchez, stressed this Friday the need to fight and fight to overcome economic crises and overcome situations as complex as the current one, with Putin’s war in Ukraine, and pointed to the protection of social majority as the best path, in the face of austerity recipes. “Now that we are seeing all this downward fiscal competition, we must remember that the important thing is to preserve and strengthen the welfare state, which is what unites societies and what it does is defend us against illness or adversity (… ) a response of clear progressive inspiration, and if you allow me, social democrat”, he has stated opposing the measures promoted by the autonomous governments of the PP in recent days.
“Sooner rather than later we are going to bend the inflation curve, just as we bend the pandemic curve, and we will have a country that will be more competitive for having promoted dignity,” he pointed out during the tenth anniversary ceremony of the newspaper. in Valencia, which he attended after returning from his trip to New York for the UN summit. During his speech, the President of the Government also celebrated the improvement in GDP growth in the second quarter, up to 1.5%, according to data from the National Institute of Statistics, four tenths more than initially estimated.
“Where there were amnesties and tax gifts for the wealthiest, there will be tax reforms that guarantee that those who have the most, contribute the most to public finances to have a much stronger welfare state,” he said, referring to the recipes that were used for the economic crisis of ten years ago and the proposal that the Government has launched this week for the new tax on large fortunes.