How strong is Spain's new government?
Spain's new Prime Minister Pedro Sánchez has presented his cabinet. It is being hailed as clearly pro-European and for the first time in Spain's history has more women ministers than men. While some commentators believe the new governing team has huge potential, others are convinced it won't be in power for long.
A reliable partner for Brussels
The governing team put together by Prime Minister Pedro Sánchez has a convincing, clearly pro-EU position, The Irish Times writes in praise:
“The naming of Josep Borrell as foreign minister is particularly astute. … Borrell is a highly experienced advocate for the European Union. He was a well-regarded president of the European Parliament [2004-2007], and was on the committee that drew up the European constitution. Nothing could indicate more clearly to Spain's EU partners that Sánchez can be trusted to defend the union's common interests. It is to be hoped that the Spanish right will now demonstrate real patriotism, and Europeanism, by exercising responsible rather than destructive opposition.”
The best Spain has to offer
This strong team isn't taking charge only to step down again, El Periódico de Catalunya comments approvingly:
“With his choice of ministers Sánchez has made it very clear that he wants to introduce political major changes. ... This is a government that has not been chosen to keep the usual internal party forces happy, and that shows no sign of being a transitional government. Sánchez talked of holding elections soon, but the profiles of the ministers show that this is a government that is planned for the long term. ... Sánchez confirmed that his government aims to reflect the best of Spanish society. Well balanced, well qualified and experienced - with this government Sánchez is making a good start.”
Spain's left-wing spring
Sánchez's new cabinet sends a clear signal to left-wing voters and to Europe as a whole, De Volkskrant's Spain correspondent Maartje Bakker writes:
“Spain's prime minister wants to do all he can to prevent the protests for women's rights from being appropriated by Podemos. The goal of the PSOE leader is now to win back the votes of those under 45 from the left-wing protest party. ... Sánchez has also named Nadia Calviño, a top European bureaucrat, as economy minister. This nomination is bound to have a calming effect on other European countries: the Spanish government is as respectable as the Italian government is unpredictable.”
Europe could do without another crisis
Prime Minister Sánchez's new cabinet faces huge challenges, La Libre Belgique notes:
“It's entirely possible that there will be new elections. However, the danger is that the Spanish parliament will become even more fragmented than it already is. The two traditional families, the PP and PSOE, could lose even more seats, and the political landscape could become even more chaotic. Sánchez has shown that he had the political sense to trip up his adversary. Now he must show that he is also able to quickly put things together. Otherwise he runs the risk of making his own quick exit - and sparking a new crisis that Europe can well do without.”