Is the new government in Spain progress or  political pageantry?

Though no cabinet in Europe's history has ever reached 64% female representation, some are calling Spain's gender balanced government a PR stunt. 

Tonina Alomar
Tonina Alomar NewsMavens, Spain
Is the new government in Spain progress or  political pageantry? - NewsMavens
Cabinet of Pedro Sanchez, WikiCommons

Why this story matters:

Critics have pointed out that some appointees to Spain's new Cabinet lack political experience. Some have even gone so far as to criticize Spain's new Prime Minister Pedro Sanchez for assembling a Cabinet notable for its impressive media appeal.

Especially since Prime Minster Pedro Sanchez has gotten off to a strong start, even if there was already a first resignation of the culture minister: the new government possesses a notable degree of consensus despite its weak parliamentary majority, and there is yet no great dissension among the allies who put him there.

Nevertheless, Sanchez did not receive an electoral mandate and this will affect his administration going forward. Without elections they were not able to increase their 84 seats in Parliament and Sanchez has rejected calls from liberal allies -- such as Pablo Iglesias of Podemos -- to form a left wing government.

This lack of a mandate was one reason some have called for elections. The ambitious Ciudadanos leader, Albert Rivera, is looking to exploit his party's popularity in the polls. Especially as other top parties such as PP (the disgraced party of outgoing President Mariano Rajoy) and Iglesias's Podemos undergo internal strife.

Commentators from The Economist and El Pais argue that this is the last thing Spain needs now. Sanchez's first responsibility is to restore stability and legitimacy to a government tainted by the widespread corruption of Mariano Rahoy’s People’s Party.

The time for elections will come, but in the meantime this groundbreaking team is rebuilding government legitimacy in its own image -- one which is made up of 64% female ministers. 

Details from the story:

  • Sánchez became Prime Minister of Spain after former Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy, whose party is mired in corruption scandals, was overthrown in a no-confidence vote.
  • Carmen Calvo, will become deputy prime minister; Budget Director-General at the European Commission Nadia Calvino, economy minister; and state prosecutor Dolores Delgado, justice minister. Meritxell Batet will be in charge of territorial policy.
  • The government of Pedro Sanchez is 64.7% women.
  • Spain’s center-right Ciudadanos party is led by Albert Rivera, and is the third most popular party in Spain. They refused to participate in the vote of "no confidence."
  • Pablo Iglesias leads Podemos, Spain's largest left-wing party. He has recently come under fire for betraying the party's principles.
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