Monday, June 06, 2016

The (Spanish) Governmental Ménage à Trois

So, as the big day looms ever closer and the fateful votes will be cast - and I'm talking not of 23-J but of 26-J - the bookies (were there such a thing) are reporting good money going on a threesome forming the next government. Yes, after one failed election and an even greater failure by Pedro Sánchez to oust Super Mariano, 26-J looks destined to unite Pedro and Mazza. Possibly.

Pedro and Albert, Ant and Dec of PSOE and the C's, are still determined to continue their unconvincing double act and make it even less convincing by inviting Mazza into the political celebrity jungle. Or maybe it's the other way round. Or maybe Super Mariano won't be there at all. That's something else the bookies are laying odds on. Which is hardly surprising. Through all the faffing around after last December's election, it was clear to everyone, except Mariano, that if only he had stepped aside, the grand coalition could have been formed.

As we know, however, Mariano doesn't believe that he has a natural successor. Super Mariano would rule forever if he had his way. But the time is now coming when he will have to give way to an unnatural successor. Who might it be? The bookies are reckoning on the Dancing Queen, María Soraya Sáenz de Santamaría Antón Etc.

None of this will of course go down well with the advocates of governments of change and progressive politics. How would either Ant or Dec be able to spin a cosying up to the PP as representing change or progression? Only if Mariano goes, but even then they would be barely credible. For Ant, meantime, the possibility exists that if PSOE gets a further stuffing, he might no longer be around in any event. I'm a failed politician, get me out of here.

The likelihood of this coalition ménage à trois stems not from any genuine belief among the three parties that it is what any of them wants but from Pedro's fear (or the fear of any successor to him) that he could well find himself forced into being a number two behind Pablo. Podemos have been talking up Iglesias as being the next president, and it most certainly would be president. None of this Anglicised prime minister lark. Pablo, a prime minister serving a Bourbon king? You have to be joking. President it would be.

There is a further reason to believe that there will be this three-in-a-bed liaison. The citizens. They won't accept any more arsing around. They won't want a December election to sort out the mess of 26-J. Something will have to give. And Super Mariano is what will have to give. He can't be like Arsène Wenger, arsing around forever and ever ... .

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