Íñigo Errejón, the co-founder of Podemos who split with his former party last year to launch Más País, has been selected to chair the congressional anti-corruption comission, putting him in a position to lead the fight against corruption and in favour of institutional and legal reforms to promote greater transparency and democracy in Spain.
Errejon’s selection was negotiated between the Socialist party (PSOE) and Unidas Podemos governing coalition partners at a time when Errejón is under pressure to show results for his maverick departure from Unidas Podemos to launch Más País as an extension of the Más Madrid movement he co-founded with former Madrid Mayor Manuela Carmena.
In addition to showing some result for his launch of Más País, Errejón is also trying to differentiate his party’s role in Congress by staking out position’s that do not simply mirror those of the governing-coalition partners, Unidas Podemos and the PSOE.
In a recent radio interview, Carmena expressed doubts about the wisdom of launching Más Madrid, because it did not ultimately serve to united the progressive left in Madrid and was poorly received by voters at the ballot box. Likewise, in November’s general elections Más País was widely tipped to win at least five seats in Spain’s Congress, but voters nationwide did not respond to the new party and it won just three seats in Congress, insufficient to form its own parliamentary group and relegating Errejón and the party’s two other Más País legislators to the “mixed group” of congressional deputies.
Of the 36 commissions formed for the current legislative session, the PSOE will chair a total of 17 and the conservative opposition Partido Popular seven, while Unidas Podemos will chair six, Catalonia’s ERC three and both Más País and the Basque nationalist PNV parties will hold one commission chair each.
Both the centre-right Ciudadanos party, which previously chaired the anti-corruption commission in Congress, and the ultra-right VOX party were closed out of any commission chairmanships during the current session.
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