Spain's main right wing political forces the Popular Party (PP) and Ciudadanos (Cs), concluding their agreement on a new coalition government for the southern region of Andalusia, have announced this Boxing Day that the position of parliamentary speaker will be granted to Cs and the far right party Vox - whose votes are necessary for the right to govern - will be admitted to a position on the Andalusian chamber's presiding Board. In turn, the leader of the Andalusian branch of the PP, Juanma Moreno, will be the next president of the Andalusian government as part of a coalition with Cs. The investiture of the new president is planned for January 16th.
The partners in the future government reached this agreement today after a new meeting of their negotiation teams, which also closed an accord on the composition of the parliamentary Board, which is to include a presence of all parties with parliamentary representation: the PP, Cs and Vox on the right; and the Socialists (PSOE) and Adelante Andalucia (AA) on the left. The constitution of the Board, a prior step to the creation of the government, is to take place this Thursday.
After a 90 minute Boxing Day meeting between the PP and Cs' Andalusian leaderships, Juanma Moreno said that it was "reasonable" to hold the investiture debate on January 16, and that at least five or six days before that, the shape of the new coalition government would be known. Negotiations on this will take place over the next few days.
Moreno, next president of Andalusia
"This agreement clarifies the obstacles that existed on the presidency of the Andalusian government. And if everything goes as planned and we all comply with our agreement, it is more than likely that I will be the next president of Andalusia", said Moreno, who would replace the socialist Susana Díaz after 37 years of governments led by the PSOE.
Negotiating groups from the PP and Cs will begin working "right away" on the composition of the new executive, the naming of ministries and their competencies, a cabinet in which the regional Ciudadanos leader Juan Marín will probably be vice president with the two parties likely to split the ministries fifty-fifty.
Talks with Vox
The PP leader did not hide that he "is maintaining and will maintain" talks with the far-right Vox party, which will be key both for the investiture and for tomorrow's constitution of the seven-member parliamentary Board, the organ which organizes the internal agenda of parliament and makes decisions on legislative priorities and procedural questions.
According to the coalition agreement reached for the Board, its composition is to be widely distributed: Cs will occupy the position of parliamentary speaker, while the three vice presidents are to be members of the PP, PSOE and AA. The three remaining roles, the secretaries, would be occupied by the PSOE, PP and Vox. Thus, the far-right group is to be admitted to this key organ along with all the other parties who won seats.
According to Cs leader Marín, this agreement means that his party will not have to cede its right to a place on the organ, but the PP will have to give up a place to Vox. Meanwhile, the left-wing AA will also be able to enter the Board, if it wishes, with support from the right.
Marin also criticized the PSOE for proposing an "exclusive" Board, on which Vox would not be represented and the speakership occupied by the Socialists, who are the largest single party in the new parliament although they lost their majority to the right, thanks in large measure to the rise of Vox.
After the elections on December 2nd, the PSOE obtained 33 seats, fourteen less than in the elections of 2015; the PP, 26, seven less; Cs reached 21, 12 more; Adelante Andalusia 17, three less than the Podemos and IU total in 2015; and Vox entered the chamber for the first time with twelve deputies.