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¡Adiós, Rajoy!

Today the Spanish Parliament has voted a no-confidence motion presented by the leader of the socialist party (PSOE), Pedro Sánchez, against the conservative Prime Minister, Mariano Rajoy (PP). One of Europe’s most corrupt governments is gone. 

In the midst of the term, after a round of two elections (2015 and 2016) that failed in reaching a left wing majority, a judicial sentence moved the pieces on the chessboard. A recent verdict of Spain’s High Court condemned PP for benefiting from an efficient system of institutional corruption in the party. The exposure of the widespread criminal activities at the highest level of government could not be clearer.

The vote obtained the support of among others, Unidos Podemos, which includes the Green parties EQUO and Iniciativa per Catalunya Verds. They demanded a new route to lead the country out of precarity, and opened the door for future progressive cooperation. Regionalist and nationalist parties from Catalonia and the Basque Country also played an important role as the outgoing Spanish government did not enjoy strong support in these regions and PP has been instrumental in fueling conflict in Catalonia.

Mariano Rajoy losing the no-confidence vote is an important step forward, as corruption is a European problem that we young people are too often paying the price for. This shows that there are consequences for the crimes that PP’s members are well-known for and that have once again been confirmed in the clearest way. We hope that Rajoy’s European partners also note this and that the European People’s Party takes measures to end the widespread corruption among its member parties, as PP is by far not an isolated case.

Pedro Sánchez is now presented with an opportunity to put in place ambitious, progressive policies in the fields of ecological transition, gender equality and social justice. His initial declarations have been promising, and Greens in Spain and the rest of Europe will follow up so that Spain is steered on a direction of sustainability, equality and another way of doing politics.