Mayor Emilio Bascuñana, the leader of the PP, says that despite all the vitriol between the two parties in recent weeks, he is prepared to re-evaluate some of his strategies as the Mayor of Orihuela, and he wants to move forward with a majority that guarantees governability of the municipality and as such he has no other option but to enter into discussion with the Cs.
As the party that gained the most seats, (PP 9, PSOE 6, C’s 5, UP 3, Vox 2), and despite some of the faces and the statements made on election night at the PP headquarters, he now has to an agreement with Cs that guarantees governability during the next four years.
The PP leader knows that for a second term in the Mayor’s office he needs to have at least 13 seats, which make up the majority, and his 9 councillors are far from giving him that mandate.
So his options are to revalidate the pact that just ended with Cs, which increased its number of seats by two councillors to 5 and which would provide Bascuñana with a majority of 14. The now acting mayor said yesterday that “now I have to work toward establishing a stable government.
However, the internal divisions in the PP are still clear for all to see, so much so that on electoral night there was a clear split between the followers of the current mayor and the party number 3 and PP President, Dámaso Aparicio and his followers, with the two groups choosing to follow the results in different locations. Aparicio was in the PP headquarters in the Plaza Nueva, while Bascuñana and his followers were 250 meters, in his office on la avenida de España.
In Cs they avoid talking about the pact that everyone takes for granted and in the lead up to the election they stated very clearly that they would not work with the PP again. So it would seem that leader José Aix does not rule out leaving the PP to govern as a minority, as Cs did in 2015 before joining the government a year later.
Although the scenario is different since the oranges have far more strength, having added two additional councillors, the same number that were lost by the PP, and their intention could be to form part of the government now that they would have more councils and more responsibilities.
Of course, they warn that this time the negotiations will be tougher and with greater demands given their position of strength. In fact, Orihuela is one of the very few fiefs where Cs have grown since in the vast majority of municipalities in the province the party led by Albert Rivera has experienced a notable decline. Meanwhile, on the left the PSOE are seeking explanations for their poor results.
THIRTEEN NEW FACES IN THE CORPORATION
The Corporation will have 13 new faces. The well-known official of ONCE, María Teresa Sánchez, José Galiano and Víctor Bernabéu, will sit on the PP bench, although the latter was previously a councillor for the PP during the Mónica Lorente tenure which he left after the expulsion of Pepa Ferrando with whom in 2015 he then formed a party Democratic Forum.
The group with the most new faces is the PSOE, since only 2 of its 6 councillors have served previously, Carolina Gracia and María García. In Cs they have changed their leader, now José Aix, also adding Ángel Noguera and Ramón López, the spokesman of the FAPA Gabriel Miró for 12 years. María García Sandoval, spokesperson for Unidas Podemos, is another new councillor as are José Manuel García and Susi Aniorte, from Vox, who is entering for the first time in a town hall where there will be 5 health workers, 2 lawyers and 2 journalists .