The government of Pedro Sanchez has managed to carry out in Congress what could be the last General State Budget of the legislature, with 187 votes in favour, 156 against and one abstention. This is a comfortable victory for the Government six months after the municipal and regional elections, and with which the legislature is guaranteed to run out.
The 2023 accounts must now be ratified by the Senate, although Moncloa intends that no amendments be presented and they can see the final green light at the beginning of December, instead of at the end of the month, without having to return to Congress.
ERC has kept suspense over their voting direction until the last minute. Although the independentistas have not obtained all the concessions that they demanded, during the plenary session, Gabriel Rufián has been satisfied with the achievements.
[El Gobierno se garantizó el apoyo de Bildu al Presupuesto y ofreció a ERC 900 millones de inversión]
The independentistas had delayed the agreement, as in previous years, with the aim of continuing to negotiate with the Government. It must be taken into account that this same Thursday the reform of the crime of sedition and, for the moment, the reduction of embezzlement has been parked.
These are two demands intended to resolve the criminal horizon of Oriol Junqueras, Carles Puigdemont and the rest of those convicted of 1-O. After these concessions, what most interested ERC was the transfer of the management of the Renfe Cercanías in Catalonia to the Generalitat.
However, they have not succeeded because they had lost strength as they were not essential to move the 2023 Budget forward. After all, without them they already had 175 supports and only a simple majority is necessary. But those of ERC have not gone empty-handed, since investment promises in Catalonia amount to a total of 900 million euros.
Although the support of ERC means that the Budgets are approved with greater ease, it was already known that they were going to go ahead since EH Bildu confirmed their yes. To achieve this, Pedro Sánchez has made multiple concessions to the bildutarras.
The most controversial of all has been the commitment to transfer the competence of Traffic and Road Safety in Navarra to the foral community. This implies the departure of the Civil Guard agents who until now were dedicated to this work. The measure will enter into force, at the latest, five months after this Thursday in which the accounts are approved.
[“Volaron casas cuartel con niños”: el duro ataque al Gobierno por sacar a la Guardia Civil de Navarra]
Outside of Congress, the general coordinator of Bildu, Arnaldo Oteguihas made an assessment of the situation in which he has highlighted that “there is a great paradox that there is no Government of progress in the Spanish State if those of us who want to leave, and are also on the left, do not support it”.
The vote on the Budgets took place after a very tense plenary session in the Lower House due to the hangover caused by the attack by the Vox deputy Carla Toscano to the Minister of Equality. On Wednesday afternoon, Toscano told Irene Montero that his only merit had been to “study Pablo Iglesias in depth”.
His words have been the most debated issue this Thursday, above the numbers. The parliamentary groups have shown their rejection of the offenses of the previous day, but in the ranks of Vox have maintained their speech against the minister.
With these approved Budgets, the Government ends two weeks of concatenation of controversies such as the Law on Yes is yes and that of the reform of the crime of sedition. Can now be sold as a Stable Executive, despite being first in coalition. After all, approving three consecutive Budgets is quite a Rare avis.
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