Thursday, July 29

The elegance of knowing how to leave

Knowing when the end is, accept it, leave without noise, with elegance… It is not easy and it rarely happens in politics. There are ways and means to do it. Some leave hurt, with resentment; others, calm and with the feeling of a duty accomplished and some, with a certain obsession to rewrite history. It is not easy to admit that someone is expendable when it was necessary before, that they do not want them where they wanted them, that priorities change and that nothing will be the same.

The goodbye of Carmen Calvo, in the transfer of portfolio to his successor in the Ministry of the Presidency, is the best example of exquisiteness that has been seen in the inaugurations of the new ministers of Pedro Sánchez. “It is the most loving transfer in the history of Spanish politics. Félix [Bolaños] Is a friend. Friendship is forged in hard times: call to call, look to look. He does not arrive, he continues, with proven ability and loyalty. Like me, she is small but resilient and has a proven professionalism and humanity. “Those were her words. No drama, no resentment, no frustration, and a waste of praise for who will de facto assume the vice presidency that she leaves and with whom in this Time worked through good times and bad times and has earned the respect of the entire Government. His goodbye and welcome to Bolaños took place in the La Moncloa complex, attended by a large group of ministers and even José Luis Rodríguez Zapatero, who was also in that of the new Foreign Minister, José Manuel Albares, and of whom it is said that he has been working as a handyman for Sánchez for months.

In the wide range of farewells on Monday there were also sad ones and without a trace of any minister. This was the case of José Luis Ábalos, who leaves the Ministry of Transport in the hands of the former mayor of Gavà, Raquel Sánchez, and the Secretary of Organization of the PSOE, in those of Santos Cerdá. The departure of Ábalos has perplexed locals and strangers and has given rise to all kinds of speculation and rumors. There is something in his relay that escapes the usual codes of any relay. More knowing that his was a bomb-proof loyalty with Sánchez and he was an unconditional supporter of the president since the crisis of 2016, when no one was betting a euro on his political future.

That of Ábalos was a bitter farewell, in which the already former minister did not have a single mention of Sánchez. He closed his passage through the Government without any gratitude. “I am only proud to have been part of the Government of Spain. Not a Government, but at the service of Spain”, were his only words. He had not yet resigned from the PSOE Organization secretariat, for which Sánchez also does not have him, and Adriana Lastra’s environment was quick to say that the deputy secretary general will assume plenipotentiary powers. Not so fast. Santos Cerdán will be the new Secretary of Organization and Sánchez has full confidence in his ability, so the number two of the party will have to share at least space.

The goodbye of Miquel Iceta in Territorial Policy did not go unnoticed in his transfer to the former mayor of Puertollano Isabel Rodríguez when he said: I am very sorry to leave this Ministry, I want to say it that clearly, we have put a lot of enthusiasm and many hours here. “The minister, who happens to take charge of the Culture portfolio, did not expect such a rapid change. There was nothing in his words resentment, just realism Iceta is a pragmatic man who surely has already turned the page, despite the initial perplexity when he was informed of the portfolio change.

The departure of Iván Redondo has not had a farewell. The former chief of staff of the president has not set foot in La Moncloa since Friday and he did not go to Bolaños’ inauguration. He has spent his time rewriting the history of his reasons for leaving the cabinet. It is enough to read some eulogies to deduce that the opposite of what is said has happened. The president never offered him any portfolio, nor did he express his willingness to retire. Bolaños already said in his inauguration that there are things, such as being a minister, that “are neither requested nor rejected.” And Redondo asked to be head of the Presidency, knowing that Sánchez was going to place his hitherto general secretary in that position.

When one is already gone by someone else’s desire, the best thing is to leave completely, not criticize, question, or fantasize, which is how Calvo did. The art of knowing how to leave, with nobility and without noise, should be studied first in politics and also in marketing.

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