The decision of the Supreme Court to rectify its position and decide now to review the pardons of the Government to the leaders of the process does not generate, at least for now, concern within the Executive. They understand that what the High Court has done is to legitimize the decision of PP, Cs, Vox and Catalan Civic Coexistence to appeal the granting of the grace measure, but that it does not go into the substance of the decision. They speak of “legitimacy of action” and defend both the “legality” and the “utility” of pardons.

In the La Moncloa team they do not show an iota of doubt about the granting of pardons. Pedro Sánchez is “convinced” of the decision he made and that it has been shown in the right direction over time. “The Government defends the legality of all its actions. In the case of pardons, not only legality, but utility for the sake of coexistence and the recovery of normality in Catalonia”, explained Isabel Rodríguez, spokesperson for the Government, minutes after knowing the decision of the Supreme.

Already on June 22, 2021, the day that the Council of Ministers approved the clemency measures, Pedro Sánchez justified them based on reasons of public utility, specifically “the need to restore coexistence and harmony within the Catalan society and in Spanish society as a whole”.

For the Government, the proof of this need for pardons, they state, is that the situation in Catalonia in 2017 or 2019 has nothing to do with the current one. “It is undeniable that the political situation today has nothing to do with that of 2017 or 2019. Normality has been restored thanks to dialogue. The Government is very satisfied with this, because one of the great problems that this country had It was that and it is no longer”, Rodríguez deepened after the celebration of the Council of Ministers.

This “way of dialogue” included the recovery of the dialogue table between the Government and the Generalitat. It resumed in September 2021, but there have been no further meetings. ERC is now pressing for an appointment between Pere Aragonès and Pedro Sánchez on account of the crisis due to the espionage of 18 pro-independence leaders, including Aragonès, by the CNI. A meeting that could also be a dialogue table. Be that as it may, there is no scheduled date yet, despite the fact that Sánchez promised to meet Aragonès.

They allege in La Moncloa that they are looking at agendas to try to balance, but that the day is about to close. In just one week the electoral campaign begins in Andalusia. A meeting of this magnitude could interfere with it, giving arguments to the right-wing formations. In the PSOE there are sectors that are reluctant for the meeting to take place in the run-up to the campaign or during the campaign itself, to avoid wear and tear. But in La Moncloa they do not close that door. It could be or not, but they do not see that the Andalusian campaign is a condition. It should be remembered that ERC is a key partner for Sánchez’s governance.

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