Monday, May 16

Instituto República y Democracia: Podemos changes the name of its foundation with Pablo Iglesias at the helm

Like the party, the think tank of Podemos opens a new stage. A month ago he incorporated Pablo Iglesias as president and in this reconversion process his management has also chosen to change the name of this institution, which will be renamed the Fundación Instituto República y Democracia, as confirmed by its director Juan Carlos Monedero to this newsroom. They leave behind the name May 25 Institute for Democracy that they registered with the Ministry of Justice in 2015 and with which they have been working until now.

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Monedero defends that in order to give the “cultural battle” that has “started the right and the extreme right” they needed the institute to identify itself with a “clear objective”. Until now the name alluded to the date on which Podemos was born. “It seemed a bit narcissistic to celebrate ourselves,” adds the director of the foundation.

And he defends that “since the 19th century” the republic has been articulated against “the monarchy”, not only as a “form of government”. “The monarchy had the power of the Armed Forces, it represented centralism, the unity of Church and State and a clientelistic relationship,” he continues. Faced with this approach, he conceives the “democratic republic as a space for configuration, thought, training, diagnosis and media pulse.”

In the last act carried out jointly between the party and the foundation, Iglesias claimed the need to bet on “a republican identity” to build the “broad front”, in which the second vice president Yolanda Díaz is working. He spoke those words last Sunday at the closing of the ‘Autumn University’, a conference that was assumed within the political formation as an “ideological rearmament meeting”, which lasted for four days and in which party members participated. , representatives of other like-minded formations and activists.

Pablo Iglesias defended there that the republican concept should be assumed as “an identity toolbox to imagine a country project of an openly plurinational Spain”. With the electoral fall of Ciudadanos, Iglesias defended that forces such as United Podemos, ERC and EH Bildu have “a tactical position”, “without precedent”, to “guide a series of crucial State decisions.” And he concluded that a “republican identity” can be a vehicle that “unifies in terms of the country” the claims of the parties mentioned above and of “forces that represent plurinationality” in territories other than the Basque Country and Catalonia.

Leaders of Unidos Podemos maintain that the active defense of a change in the state model towards the republic should be an element of differentiation with the PSOE, after two long years of joint government.

“The PSOE has had an identity in the monarchical fund, which left us the republican identity. We always had very clear from the beginning that it was a value of Podemos that the PSOE did not occupy,” explains Monedero. At the same time, he defends that this “own identity” allows the political brand not to end up diluted “in a bear hug in the Government.”

Iglesias spoke in the same vein this Sunday, when raising the challenges faced by the PSOE in the congress held this weekend and in which its youth groups have presented amendments to debate the form of the Head of State. “There will be tension,” predicted the former second vice president, who assured that the socialist bases “are not monarchical.” He also defended that the Royal House “has only made gestures to conservative Spain”, “without a gesture to a more plural Spain”.

Along the same lines, we must read the parliamentary initiatives of United We Can, apart from its partners in the PSOE, aimed at deepening the investigation from the Chamber on certain practices of the emeritus king that have run aground at the Congress Table. Not only are there differences on this issue, but also in other aspects such as the state’s relationship with the Vatican and the Catholic Church. This same Friday, Unidos Podemos presented a non-law proposal that will force the socialists to position themselves on the Concordat, signed in 1953, as well as on the financing of the institution, the subject of Religion or the sexual abuse of minors within it.

The incorporation of Iglesias to the foundation took place a month ago, after being endorsed by the management of Podemos, as advanced by With his departure from active politics, the former vice president has resumed his more media side with periodic collaborations on Cadena SER, Ctxt, Ara and Gara. He has also joined a research group at the Open University of Catalonia that analyzes political discourse on social networks. In the founding of Podemos, his work will focus on strengthening or establishing new ties with other similar progressive organizations in Europe and Latin America. The position does not carry financial remuneration.

Along with Iglesias, the foundation’s board of trustees also includes the MEP Idoia Villanueva; the organization secretary of Podemos, Lilith Vestrynge; the deputy Roberto Uriarte and Orencio Osuna, state councilor of the party.