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Madrid is on its feet: supporters want Sanchez to stay

Madrid is on its feet: supporters want Sanchez to stay

Sanchez surprised the public on Wednesday by believing he might resign soon. The reason was a corruption complaint against his wife, Begona Gomez. Sanchez said he canceled all his public appointments “for a few days” to think about the matter. He is being harassed by the right and far-right in every possible way. Sanchez, who has been in office since 2018, plans to announce his decision on Monday.

It seems that Sanchez's supporters did not want to wait. Several regional branches of the PSOE organized buses to transport their members to a mass march in Madrid. The youth organization of the Socialist Workers Party distributed leaflets on social networks saying: “Yes, Pedro, it is worth it,” and then thousands of people flocked to the capital from all over the country on Saturday to confirm their support for the prime minister.

March in solidarity with Sanchez

The ruling Socialist Party bussed its supporters to the Spanish capital, Madrid, in a show of solidarity to dissuade Prime Minister Pedro Sanchez from potentially resigning.

They chanted slogans, waved flags and painted their faces. “I hope he continues because Spain has to continue with him. If not, it scares me. We are afraid of what might come,” Leonor Romero, a council member in the southern Spanish city of Huelva, told Reuters. According to the Spanish government, about 12,500 supporters participated in the march. .

Unclear claims

The accusations against Sanchez's wife came from the organization “Manos Limpias” (“Clean Hands”). She had filed a complaint against Gomez before a court in Madrid on charges of corruption and influence in the economy. Gomez is a marketing expert who does not hold public office. She and Sanchez denied the allegations. Manos Limpias supports right-wing causes and is close to the right-wing populists in the Vox party and others.

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APA/AFP/Javier Soriano

Gomez and Sanchez have been married since 2006

The organization has attracted attention in recent years through several announcements in the field of public administration. Regarding the issue surrounding Gomez, Manos Limpias later admitted that the announcement was based on media reports that may be false. On Thursday, the Public Prosecution submitted a request to the responsible court in Madrid to stop the preliminary investigations against Gomez.

The majority believes in political strategy

For the opposition parties, Sanchez's maneuver is purely a tactical game. “I ask all citizens not to be deceived. Spain does not have a problem, what has a problem of justice is Sanchez, his government, his party and his circle. Let them solve it,” said Alberto Nunez Viejo, leader of the conservative Popular Party.

A poll commissioned by the People's Party by polling company Sigmados showed that 54.1% of respondents believed that the period of calm imposed by Sánchez was a “political strategy” to gain support ahead of the Catalan elections on May 12 and the European Parliament elections in June to win. About 56.4 percent of the 1,527 people surveyed believe that Sanchez will not resign on Monday.

Decision day in Parliament

In the event of an actual resignation, Parliament could elect a new head of government, but given the country's fragmented majority, new elections seem more likely. Since the Socialist Workers' Party is lagging behind the People's Party in opinion polls, new elections would be a risky strategy from the ruling party's point of view.

It is also conceivable that Sánchez will announce on Monday that he will ask parliament for a vote of confidence. Representatives of the people can prove that the minority government headed by him still enjoys the support of a majority of representatives.