Francis of the Tower (79 years old), abel knight (76) and Joan Ribó (75) have already made known their willingness to try to repeat as mayors of Malaga, Vigo and Valencia, respectively. If successful, the first two would govern their cities being already in their eighties.

There is not a single deputy of the 350 that the Congress has older than them. The oldest of the lordships of him is Agustin Zamarronborn in February 1946, seven months younger than Abel Caballero.

We are facing the two Spains of politics, separated by the border of the birth certificate.

The cases of the mayors of Malaga, Vigo and Valencia are not exceptional in the world of municipal politics. There is a long list of long-lived aldermen and in all parties. De la Torre is from the Popular Party and has been in charge of the mayor’s office for 22 years. Caballero, from the PSOE and 15 years at the helm. Ribó, from Compromís.

Jose Manuel Sanchez Gordillo (73 years old) is the communist mayor of Marinaleda. He is not only one of the oldest, but also has held the position since 1979 without rest.

[De la Torre quiere seguir de alcalde con más de 80 años: cinco hitos y un gran proyecto para Málaga]

But the longevity record is in Almudaina (Alicante) and it has Jose Luis Segui. Last February he celebrated half a century directing the destinies of his town, with just over a hundred inhabitants. At 80 years old, he acceded to the town hall in 1972, seventeen years before Manuel Fraga founded the party to which he now belongs, the PP.

Is gerontocracy contrasts with the freshness of Parliament. The average age in the Congress of Deputies is 48 years. More than half of the deputies are people born between 1965 and 1980. In the current legislature, only four parliamentarians are over 70 years old.

Just three years ago, the new policy brought about a rejuvenation of Parliament. The four most voted parties presented Pedro Sanchez (1972), Paul Married (1981), Albert Rivera (1979), paul churches (1983) and Santiago Abascal (1976). The future of Spain passed through youth.

But the Chamber is full of forty-somethings, like the ERC spokespersons, Gabriel Rufian (1982); of Together, Miriam Nogueras (1980); or from Navarre Suma, Sergio Sayas (1979).

The age factor

The explanation is found, according to Angel Valencia, Professor of Political Science at the University of Malaga, in which “we are dealing with two different elites”. He means that there are two sands different – that of the Parliament and that of municipal politics – “with dynamics that are not alike”.

It is not just a question of age, Valencia points out: “You can even see it in the profiles of university graduates” as a difference between the different areas.

In a paper posted alongside Francisco Collado, Valencia studies the influence of individual factors on the leadership of long-term mayors. Although age is not decisive, it is an obvious element: when a mayor passes four terms, aging is obvious.

An important detail that the UMA professor of Political Science does highlight is that the profiles of long-term mayors “such as De la Torre, Caballero or Ribó” tend to occupy “a more independent position with respect to their parties, they do not internal battles.

In conclusion, Valencia considers that “the threshold of 70 that in other areas seems insurmountable in politics is not taken into account; age is a necessary factor in this type of mayor.”

Source: Elespanol

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J. A. Allen

Author, blogger, freelance writer. Hater of spiders. Drinker of wine. Mother of hellions.

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