Elections in Castilla y León: Óscar Puente, mayor of Valladolid: “Mañueco and Casado can sink together” | Spain

Óscar Puente (Valladolid, 53 years old) adds six in the mayor’s office of Valladolid thanks to a left-wing coalition that gave command to the PSOE after 20 years of local governments of the PP. The councilor, a reference for his party in Castilla y León, defends Luis Tudanca, his party’s candidate in the February 13 elections.

Ask. Why is it surprising that the left governs in Valladolid?

Answer. Either everything changes a lot or we go to 28 years of socialist mayors since 1979. The data belie the legends; that there is a tendency to conserve does not imply not being progressive. We have made public buses and parking lots, remunicipalised water, funeral services or waste collection. We have a huge cultural density, it is an avant-garde city despite its reserved nature.

P. Are you more on the left than Pedro Sánchez?

R. Each develops progressive policies. The public management of water is something controversial in the PSOE, we decided it in a coalition government that satisfies me. It remains to be seen if we had done it alone: ​​partners help to be brave. There is an understanding public that looks at Valladolid with envy.

P. What do you think about the words of the Minister of Consumption, Alberto Garzón, about macro-farms?

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R. I have not been very interested in the subject, there is talk of bad translations … I do not have enough information, I am not a field person.

P. Do you feel persecuted on social media?

R. I am persecuted, I carry it with resignation. It has more to do with politics than statements. I have become a target of hatreds fueled by some lobbies economic. Valladolid is a terrible message for those who hold the fallacy that private is better. On what I block citizens, I am not plastic. I read what they send me, and it affects me. If I didn’t handle it, the account would be bland and no one would be blocked. I also solve problems on Twitter.

P. Why are there progressive governments in Valladolid but the PP has been on the Board for 34 years in a row?

R. The social fabric of Valladolid is not representative of all of Castilla y León. It is the largest city, with an important labor component. It can fluctuate, but it differs from small cities or rural centers. Mañueco advances elections for the judicial calendar. The PP is going down; who does not see it is blind. It has a leader, Pablo Casado, questioned outside and within his party, with a bad scenario because the Government will exhaust the legislature and grow with an economic recovery and, I hope, the end of the pandemic. This plays against the PP. Married needs to reach the generals with some success. He is a castaway who clings to Castilla y León and perhaps Andalusia. Casado grabs Mañueco to try to save himself, but they can sink together. Mañueco is not the most moderate of the PP. In forms and language, it is not that it is moderate, but bland.

P. What message do you have for former Vice President Francisco Igea?

R. He has earned it. In 2019 he could be loyal to his voters, as he promised that he would not support the PP. He was also not loyal to himself and received the rag stab. Igea has assumed the wear and tear of the pandemic with the complicated decisions of Health and has defended Mañueco. Now he accuses him of being a liar, I put my hands to my head. I’m sorry, because I think I could have contributed to regional politics. He is a victim of errors and naivety.

P. You criticized the opposition of Luis Tudanca, from your own party, in the Junta.

R. I don’t mean to be pretentious, but it was a helpful wake-up call. Perhaps I was unsympathetic to Luis, who won in 2019 and trusted Ciudadanos. Now the PSOE is in good shape and is the alternative to Mañueco. I don’t think people think about the failed vote of no confidence, there was no government chachi lollipop in Castilla y León. Ciudadanos should have supported Tudanca or followed the motion. There are the consequences.

P. Can the pacts of the central government weigh, in a traditional community?

R. Bildu does politics. A Basque PP councilor told me that he did not understand the right wing, that it acts as if ETA had not disappeared; he would have liked to see Bildu in the institutions. People will see if they want to continue with 34 years of a government plagued by corruption or depopulation. If that is less important than the budget agreements with Bildu, it is to do harakiri.

P. What has to happen for the left to reach the Board?

R. May Tudanca win and there are hinge forces. This PP has a complicated scenario, they will crash. They have made an ugly move in the midst of a pandemic. It is irresponsible, it will take its toll. The left must reinforce health, the public, care for the underprivileged and boost the economy so that people do not leave. The offer of the PSOE has to be different from the PP of so many years.

P. What role do you give Yolanda Díaz in Spanish politics?

R. It reminds me of the song of One balloon, two balloons, three balloons. We have experienced Albert Rivera, Pablo Iglesias, Íñigo Errejón … There is even a media need to create artificial figures. Then comes Paco the voter with the discounts. I don’t see it as an alternative.

P. He has twice denied Pedro Sánchez to be a minister.

R. I am happy where I am. I don’t change for anyone. I was a spokesperson, but transversality is lost, like Almeida with the PP. It is nice to dream things and see them come true. That is given only by municipal policy.

P. What will the Spain Vaciada platform contribute to the elections?

R. Channel a mood, a wake-up call. I’m suspicious that localisms solve problems. They lack strength, cohesion and suffer careerism. There are healthy platforms, with people of good intention, but others come together to thrive. The PSOE needs hinges for change. These territories know what there is. Why not try, if they are fed up with the PP, even if they don’t like the PSOE very much?


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George Holan

George Holan is chief editor at Plainsmen Post and has articles published in many notable publications in the last decade.

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