Catalunya – Some elections are important…

There’s a huge election in Catalunya on Sunday:
Jon Henley’s
there for the Guardian. Here’s his succinct summary:

Catalonia is preparing to vote in an election that could determine not just its future, but the shape of Spain and, perhaps, even the European Union.
The Generalitat, or autonomous government, polls – which have been called early after the Spanish prime minister refused even to discuss Catalonia’s demands to collect its taxes – will in effect be a plebiscite on whether the region has a future within Spain.
The Catalan leader, Artur Mas, has pledged that if, as expected, his centre-right nationalist alliance is returned as the largest bloc in the 135-seat parliament, and successfully forms a majority with other pro-independence parties, he will call a referendum on whether the region should become an independent state.
Since Madrid insists that a Catalan referendum violates Spain’s 1978 constitution, and that it will use the full force of the law to prevent one, the stage seems set for a showdown.

The polling trend is pretty clear. Support for independence is growing and a positive vote is now looking likely.
It would be nice to think that the Spanish Government would respect the peoples’ wishes….a fairly fat chance of that I’m afraid…

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  • boondock

    Most important concern for Spain is how many of their footballers will they lose to the new state!

  • IJP

    I think the wording here, and elsewhere, is slightly disingenuous.

    The largest party, the CiU, has not declared itself pro-independence (indeed it studiously avoids ever using the term), but rather in favour of a referendum.

    It really would equate to David Cameron threatening the EU of an in/out referendum if he doesn’t get the budget deal he wants – such a threat would still stop short of a recommendation of withdrawal.

    What this is really about is a demand for the same fiscal powers as Euskadi. I cannot fathom why this is deemed such an unreasonable demand in Madrid; it seems to me the PP are like the US Republicans, arguing for a “traditional vision” of their country based on a dubious past which is simply (and rightly) no longer available.

    That is not to deny that there is a snowball building in Catalonia and you can never be sure where it will lead. But “independence” remains an outside bet – not least because few Catalans would accept the current boundaries of the region for a start…!

  • antamadan

    Here’s some bull**** from a Spanish Govt. party member in the FT today. Could be any imperialist ruler from the 19th century, or indeed an extreme unionist commentator today.

    ‘Catalan independence… is a decision for all Spaniards to take. The rule of law is at stake…………….Nationalism is indeed a bad habit..biggest impediment to freedom in Catalonio, the largest obstacle to prosperity.. etc etc’

  • Dewi

    Historically correct IJP,,,but I think that huge demonstration shook up the CiU, Artur Mas has said that he vote im favour in a referendum