It will not be another adjustment or mini-crisis. It will be a global change in the leadership of the PSOE. The government president and socialist leader, Pedro Sánchez, is currently completing a complete reorganization of the management of his socialist executive, during which he will take the opportunity to renew the most important position, the deputy general secretary, but also the strategic organizational secretary and the position of spokesman, the most medial. So the three most important functions in a party. The appointments will be officially announced on Saturday, but all sources consulted agree exlehendakari Patxi López and current Education Minister Pilar Alegría will hold key positions in the new organization.
The President, Pedro Sánchez, continues with his habit of keeping his intentions to the end and not communicating anything directly, but that does not mean that the path to implement the changes at the highest level in the leadership of the PSOE has not already been prepared for some Time. It’s happened again now. The hasty departure of Adriana Lastra, with her announced resignation for personal reasons as she is in the midst of a risky pregnancy, has eased her plans to restart the party on the eve of a key election year, which was in the works at some point. And meanwhile, Alberto Núñez Feijóo’s PP is hot on his heels and ahead of him in the polls, as reflected in the last known CIS poll.
Sánchez wants to have already strained a party in the election campaign from September 1 because he knows what is at stake, first in the regional and local elections in May 2023 and especially in the parliamentary elections scheduled for the end of this year. And he wishes for a more vibrant PSOE, one that sends out more political messages and gives more support to the progressive measures it has decided (or intends to promote from the coalition government) and which it feels have not been adequately projected because of the pandemic and the war in the Ukraine.
This strategy frames this complete renewal of the leadership of the socialist executive, in which Patxi López, who was Sánchez’s rival in the 2017 primaries, where he was defeated, and Susana Díaz, are assured a fundamental role. and with whom the President has recently sought to reestablish relations.
With this radical reshuffle of the party, López was able to assume the institutional and representative position of deputy secretary-general, but without usurping or using to the detriment of all the powers that Adriana Lastra had acquired since the 40th PSOE party congress in Valencia last October secretary of the organization. López is one of the few undeniable figures within the PSOE, where he represents the values, authority and legitimacy that many leaders, barons and grassroots activists have missed in this final phase of the party. During this time, most forces have concentrated on the tasks of an unprecedented coalition government that had to live with recurring disagreements with its partners in United We Can and with absolutely extraordinary external situations such as the pandemic or now the war in Ukraine and its consequences.
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The President also expects the resignation of the current Organization Secretary Santos Cerdán in the next few hours or days, but in any case before Saturday, to present himself to the Federal Committee of the PSOE, the highest body between Congresses, with all the relevant vacant positions in the party, to fill them as you wish. The poor and increasingly distant relations between Lastra and Cerdán, precisely because of this classic struggle for internal power, was one of the factors that convinced the President to wage this full-blown crisis now, leaving no winners or losers in his wake. Both will fall.
For the functions of the new organizational secretariat, which in the PSOE historically also included control of the communications department, territorial scope and over the various spokespersons of the party, it is indebted to the figure “on the rise” of the current, Minister of Education Pilar Alegría months ago, the could also focus the work of the spokesman of the new executive instead of the current one, the Andalusian MP Felipe Sicilia linked to Lastra.
Various sources consulted, from the PSOE to Sánchez, assure that Pilar Alegría will be “safe” in the new restructuring of the socialist leadership. Sánchez won her back for national politics almost a year ago during the crisis in which he renounced his chief of staff Iván Redondo; his first vice president, Carmen Calvo, and the minister and secretary of the organization, José Luis Ábalos, to place it in the Ministry of Education, but is already thinking about its future projection.
Even then there was speculation that the Secretary General of the PSOE might be thinking of Alegría to replace Javier Lambán as election chief and presidential candidate in Aragon in the future, but both the President and the Minister are now planning their political careers at the national level. In fact, a few months ago, in a private conversation, the President encouraged her to become more involved in general policy matters outside of her specific portfolio at the ministry, with the idea that she could be part of a group of leaders more committed to the ministry to send his messages to the minister’s spokeswoman, Isabel Rodríguez.
Pilar Alegría is 44 years old and was already Minister of Innovation, Research and University of this Autonomous Government, and she has long been a figure in Sánchez’s sights among the young generations of socialist leaders who have held positions in both the national organizational chart and local and autonomous . Joy was already 2010 Member of the then PSOE coordinator and organizing secretary, Marcelino Iglesias, When he replaced Leire Pajín and former Socialist minister José Blanco, he collected the functions of deputy general secretary of the party. Alegría could be spokeswoman for the PSOE executive from next Saturday; ministers and spokespersons of this body; or even minister, speaker and secretary of the organization.
Patxi López (Portugalete, Bizkaia, October 4, 1959) was the first and only in 2009 and with the support of the PP fiefdomakari Socialist – except for the historic Ramón Rubial at the head of the Basque General Council in the late 1970s – he later became the first President of the Congress from a different party than the winner of a general election, and was also the Socialist leader of Euskadi, who served in the 130- year’s history of the party in national politics has gone furthest. López occupied until previously the Secretariat for Democratic Memory and Secularism of the Socialist Executive by Pedro Sanchez.
To complete this reorganization, the President is also planning the composition of the next Electoral Committee, which will prepare and design the campaigns for the next elections, which could include members of his most direct team, now in La Moncloa, with enormous experience in these functions, such as Óscar López, his chief of staff , or Antonio Hernando, his deputy.
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