The PP has stopped proclaiming that the municipal and regional elections on May 28 will act as the true motion of censure -instead of Vox's- against Pedro Sánchez.
Neither Alberto Núñez Feijóo nor the main leaders of the party maintain that these elections will function as a first plebiscite on the president of the Government.
The reason is that some uncertainty has taken over the headquarters of the popular, at number 13 Calle de Génova in Madrid.
Prospects are good in the municipal ones: the PP believes that it will win overall and that it will conquer many new provincial capitals;
He also predicts that he will maintain his regional power, but he does not see it as safe to seize governments from the PSOE in any relevant community, so, in the autonomous communities,
the reading the day after might not be the resounding victory that Feijóo craves.
“We can win anywhere or nowhere”, acknowledge sources from the national leadership.
to the stick
”, summary in the dome of the PP in allusion to that result that they predict adjusted;
and aware, furthermore, that they will depend on Vox to govern.
Feijóo is accustomed to prudence in electoral forecasts, they assure those around him, but now it is not just him: the entire leadership of the PP has lowered the euphoria before May 28, which had been fueled by months of polls in favor.
Even if the popular ones won the PSOE in votes —as they foresee—, if the advantage is short and they do not snatch any prominent place from the Socialists, it will be more difficult for them to impose the reading that there is a change of cycle in favor of the right.
“That message will depend on whether we can conquer some of the most populous autonomies now governed by the PSOE, such as the Valencian Community, Aragon, Castilla-La Mancha or the Balearic Islands.
Also whether we consolidate the change in Andalusia with a change in the mayoralties, which are mostly held by the Socialists.
Two and a half months after the elections, the PP does not take its victory in any community for granted, beyond those already in its power (of the 12 that hold elections).
“We count on maintaining the Government of Murcia and that of Madrid, and the rest must be fought for.
It will be one seat up or one seat down.
Of course, assaulting a castle is not the same as defending it: we are at stake for two autonomies and they [the PSOE] 10 out of 12. The first objective is to win the municipal elections in number of votes and achieve comfortable majorities in Murcia and Madrid.
The rest is up in the air”, explains another relevant member of the campaign team, who insists on the same message: “Everything is very tight”.
In the municipal ones, the PP counts on keeping the mayoralties of Madrid, Zaragoza and Málaga, “and from there, grow”.
Uncertainty, in any case, is high at the PP headquarters, although both at the headquarters and in the territories optimism is perceived due to the wear and tear that the popular observe in the progressive government.
“Citizens do not campaign until 20 or 25 days before the elections.
Now you can only see the trends, and that of the PSOE is not good.
Ferrovial's march in Spain, inflation, the case of Tito Berni... The PSOE is breaking with centrality, Sánchez has a lot of lead in his wings ”, analyzes a popular regional president.
“Just a 3% vote will decide everything.
For example, a 3% above or below decides whether or not the Socialists lose the mayoralty of Seville ”, he warns.
The calendar, however, does not favor Feijóo.
The PP leader would have preferred that the general elections be held before the municipal and regional ones, because his forecast is that Sánchez achieves a better record in the May elections by helping the pull of the candidates in the territory.
“Sánchez is going to be better off in municipal than in general”, they insist in the PP, where they now point out that the “change of cycle will be in December”.
But the warm air of May will arrive before the cold December and the other problem for the president of the PP is that all his territorial power will depend on Vox.
And the left will use the image of that right-wing coalition at the municipal and regional level to question the moderate strategy with which Feijóo will present himself to the general elections.
The PP knows this and is confident that by then Santiago Abascal's party will no longer be so scary, because there is no other alternative partner.
In the popular campaign headquarters they foresee that the ultras "suffer" in the municipal elections, although they rule out a disaster.
The PP wants Vox weakened so that it does not require it to enter many governments, while their relationship is one of dependency.
Some management sources acknowledge that now their concern is that Vox will play because of the fiasco of the motion of no confidence and the amount of the right will not be enough to snatch places from the left.
A global agreement with the extreme right
Feijóo and his leadership are preparing to govern with Vox if necessary.
In the leader's environment they assure that the PP will govern "with what it can."
Feijóo is going to be involved in the decision on the post-electoral pacts "jointly" with the barons, although he will try to avoid many coalition governments being formed.
For that “it is not the same that they take 4 than 14 ″ seats, they point to his environment.
Based on the results of May, the popular leadership intends to enter into a global negotiation with Vox, according to sources in the leadership.
The objective is for Abascal to accept that his party can govern in some places but leaving out others, with a pact on the map of Spain as a whole.
The popular ones know that new
[by the controversial vice president of Castilla y León, Juan García Gallardo, from Vox] are stones in their backpack for the generals.
Despite this, no one in the PP defends giving up their territorial power for not governing with the extreme right.
“Governments must be moved forward.
Bird flying, to the casserole.
Although I would enter into minimum agreements and take Vox to the limit ”, reflects a moderate baron of the PP.
"To the voters who want change you have to give them change."
The leadership of the PP foresees curves in the coming months of the campaign.
This week's episode, in which Sánchez brought up in Congress the friendship that Feijóo maintained in the 1990s with a smuggler (later convicted of drug trafficking), is being analyzed in Genoa as the first sign that La Moncloa has activated the machinery against the PP.
The popular ones also assure, without evidence, that the Prosecutor's Office is going to be involved in this strategy of attrition.
The ranks are tight before what is coming, although in principle Feijóo has the wind in his favor.
"The only thing we have to do is not screw up," sums up a popular baron.
Feijóo has taken it to the letter and has activated the conservative strategy: this week he has gotten out of the way without a public agenda and with just one intervention on Monday,
only yes is yes.
The result in May is so close that Feijóo knows that he cannot make any mistakes.
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