The mayor of Madrid, José Luis Martínez-Almeida, said this Tuesday that he did not understand the “campaign” and the “cataract of insults” poured over him for his statements about Almudena Grandes, who died on November 27 at the age of 61 for cancer and of which he said does not deserve to be named the city’s favorite daughter. Far from rectifying his words, as requested by the opposition, Almeida assures that he has “never” denigrated or disqualified her and has stressed that he absolutely respects and understands his widower, Luis García Montero.
Almeida received a multitude of criticism on social networks on Monday for saying in an interview that in her opinion the writer Almudena Grandes does not deserve to be named the city’s favorite daughter, a point included in the budget agreement that she signed with the Mixed Group (Recover Madrid) . These criticisms were added on Monday by the President of the Government, Pedro Sánchez, and this Tuesday by the Minister of the Presidency, Félix Bolaños, who said that “the best Madrid, the most committed, the most supportive, the most cultured, the most advanced, Almudena Grandes represents it more than that archaic couple represented by PP and Vox ”.
Faced with Vox’s refusal to negotiate the 2022 budgets, the municipal government of PP and Ciudadanos negotiated the public accounts with the Mixed Group, made up of three ediles split from Más Madrid that included in the budget pact granting this recognition to the author.
Speaking to the media after a minute of silence for the murder of a minor in Lavapiés, Almeida said that “it is difficult” to understand “that campaign” about him saying that he disqualifies and insults Grandes when he voted in favor of give it a street. “You will not have heard from me a single disqualification of Almudena Grandes, not a single one, I have limited the debate solely and exclusively to whether or not that distinction should be granted,” the councilor has defended.
Regarding the tweet published by the poet and director of the Cervantes Institute and the widower of Grandes, describing Almeida’s words as mean, the mayor has assured that he understands that he wrote it and has transferred his “total and absolute respect” to the “position” that he maintains. He has also argued that when speaking of a concession such as that of a favorite daughter, “taking into account the honor it entails”, it is legitimate, necessary and important that a position can be determined without having to receive “a cataract of insults and disqualifications ”that he, has highlighted, has had to receive.
He has ensured that his statements are consistent with what he demonstrated with his vote in the City Council, and has stressed that it was not the Government team that put on the table that the negotiation of the budgets included the appointment of Grandes favorite daughter. He insisted that the government team made a “weighting” about the “need” that Madrid had to have the budgets and the mixed group established as a “non-negotiable” condition to include that point. In addition, he also recalled that he never denied the legitimacy of the PSOE position to vote against the award of the city’s Gold Medal to Andrés Trapiello, whom the PSOE called “revisionist.”
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George Holan is chief editor at Plainsmen Post and has articles published in many notable publications in the last decade.