“I do not interfere, I am available,” Felipe González told Pedro Sánchez just a year ago, at the celebration of the 40th Congress of the PSOE, which served to officially seal the reconciliation in the party four years after the dog-faced internal battle in which all the powers of the party were against the current general secretary, who obtained the overwhelming support of the militancy. The PSOE is now celebrating another round date: the 40th anniversary of Felipe González’s first victory with an absolute majority and has organized a series of celebrations that began this Monday with the inauguration at the Ferraz headquarters of an exhibition that reviews those four decades already which will be followed by activities such as the premiere of a documentary that the party has prepared and will culminate with a great rally in Seville, the land of González, on October 29, one day after his first victory at the polls.
Sánchez speeds down the lane of social democracy willing to demonstrate the usefulness of the welfare state
The act, in which the other general secretaries, José Luis Rodríguez Zapatero and Joaquín Almunia, were also present, and in which the late Alfredo Pérez Rubalcaba was mentioned on several occasions, sought to inject morale into the socialists, in low hours in the polls, except for the CIS, which was published just as the interventions in Ferraz began and which gives the PSOE a four-point advantage over the PP. In line with the respite that he gave the current president twelve months ago, González has reflected on the complexity of governing and has cited examples such as the Moncloa Pacts, but has recognized that Sánchez has had an “extraordinarily difficult” time.
The former president who is now claimed by the PP has assured that in the coming months “the only thing predictable is the unpredictable.” “There are no certainties that can be affirmed,” assured the former socialist leader, who has been sympathetic to the turns when one is in power. “Politicians, reviled politicians, are actually providers of certainties, even when politicians do not have them,” he said before the attentive gaze of Sánchez, who nodded when his predecessor assured that presidents have to resolve doubts “with the pillow and once they show their faces they cannot be transferred to the public”. “If we have to provide certainties, we have only to affirm a position [ha proseguido]. This may be wrong or need to be corrected and those who do not understand this process are the most sectarian”. Message sent to the opposition.
González has claimed some of the milestones of “modernization” of his mandates, such as the public health system or universal and free public education up to the age of 16, before admitting “overwhelmed” the night he won 202 seats in Congress of the Deputies for a job that he has admitted was “overwhelming” him both because of his age (he was precisely 40 years old) and because of his experience (he had taken over the leadership of the PSOE in the Congress of Suresnes in 1974); but that he assumed for a “Spanish society that mobilized (…) to commit itself to the future of the country.”
“Looking at these images, we remember that those elections of 1982 were the moment for a profound change, an explosion of collective self-esteem”, Sánchez said at the beginning of his speech: “Spain decided to move to the color of modernity from the black and white of undemocratic process. “We gave self-esteem to a country that has always been missed. Today no Spaniard knows himself more than anyone else, but we will not be less than anyone again, ”said the socialist leader.
“The past is an act of pride,” claimed Sánchez, who has taken González’s glove when referring to the difficulties he has encountered in his mandate, such as the moment in which he had to decree confinement due to the pandemic, but He has also vindicated socialists for seeing “opportunities where others see threats”, such as in the ecological or digital transition. “We are not afraid of challenges or challenges [ha proclamado]. We were not born to tell everyone what they want to hear”.
“There are many uncertainties, but there is a certainty”, he replied to González: “The PSOE is going to govern (…) never forgetting its values and principles”. After being grateful on behalf of the generations that have “taken the baton” from González, Almunia, Zapatero or Rubalcaba, he has promised to continue the legacy: “May our work in the Government be the best tribute to your work for the country ”.