The candidate Aragonès sets the elections for 2025 and presents himself as Junqueras’ successor
The MHP Pere Aragonès has announced that the elections to the Parliament of Catalonia will take place in February 2025, as required by law. He made this known after being proclaimed a candidate for the presidency of the Generalitat by ERC. This decision may surprise some, as it involves nominating a candidate a year in advance and having electoral lists ready. It’s like starting a race with a day’s lead.
The reason for this strategy is to resolve the leadership dilemma posed by the cohabitation between Junqueras and Aragonès, without waiting to see what happens with the former’s possible disqualification. Apparently, ERC has chosen to promote Junqueras to a more symbolic and visionary role, where he will be able to write “glorious pages”. No one is more magnanimous with recognition than the one who wins a game. At the moment.
Why advance the candidate if there is no early election?
The question that many people ask is: why choose a candidate when there are twelve months left for the elections, if it is not to be prepared for some advances? Statements in politics last as long as the next poll comes out. And this year is electoral, with the European elections in June. For this reason, Aragonès has done a small remodeling of the government, creating what Partal calls an Orwellian ministry of truth, with a new political commissar, Sergi Sabrià, preparing the triumph of Big Brother with a totalitarian control of the media. A good comparison although perhaps a bit exaggerated. More than Big Brother, Aragonés looks like the Wizard of Oz, Frank Baum’s character who operates an outlandish machinery to stun and impress his people, pretending to be what he is not.
In the European elections, the republicans show their Iberianness by presenting a candidacy with the Basque left and, if necessary, by making a candidacy reminiscent of Galeuzca. Just like Junts, which will go hand in hand with the more bourgeois PNB, in the end, another way of Iberianism, more of a good family. The successors of the old convergence will have to clarify whether the party leans towards the nostalgic for Shangri-la or towards the young (and not so young) who look back in anger. The electorate also expects the party to define itself. In any case, it will have to solve the same dilemma as ERC and choose a candidate. See, MHP Carles Puigdemont has stood above the fray with his moral, but not organic, position, which is smart to keep the ranks together. In the end, however, he will have to decide and everything points to him doing it in the manner of Henry IV of Navarre, because the Generalitat is well worth a mass.
An election that will not talk about independence
The most curious thing about all this, fodder for talk shows and falsehoods in the country, is that it assumes that the elections will be decided in a partitocratic key with a score in moderate cantabile of the regional management. There will also be a dance of practical issues, from amnesty, through Rodalies, immigration, Catalan in the EU and the Spanish Congress. But no one will talk about independence. Business as usual.
The electoral analyzes revolve around the parties with parliamentary representation and, taking into account the experience of the last two legislatures, it is clear that, for them, the independence of Catalonia has never been a trending topic. In this perspective, the only difference worthy of attention is if abstention increases and, consequently, the PSC wins the elections or if the pro-independence bloc wins them; which, in turn, makes no noticeable difference.
Two processes that can change the landscape
Nevertheless, two processes, currently under way, threaten to alter the calm waters of autonomous management by reintroducing the need for independence into the picture: the organization Aliança Catalana, of Sílvia Orriols, and the civic list that seems to will be proposed by the Catalan National Assembly. Both will encounter many difficulties promoted by the partitocracy and its media beneficiaries.
As for the civic list, if it is considered, it is a new experience, since it is not another party, but an ad hoc association, with the sole objective of proclaiming independence. The big bang of the new era, after which party life will return, like swallows in summer. Its individual members, who may not be professional politicians, will apparently be elected by the citizens and, if accepted, will pledge in writing to proclaim independence.
Now, for the civic deputies to carry out such a noble task, they will have to count on the defense of the people against the State’s reprisals, which will be immediate and devastating. And this is the crucial point: will they have it? The first indicator of whether this will happen will be the number of participants in the consultation. And then the list voters. Of course, if the deputies obtained by the list are not decisive in Parliament, this will mean that independence does not have enough support.
In this sense, the presence of the civic list turns the 2025 elections into a plebiscite.