25th July 2021
Pablo Casado and José Luis Martínez-Almeida
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Madrid City Council swings right, helped by far-right

Madrid City Council has moved to the right after a right-wing People’s Party (PP) candidate was elected mayor with the support of the far-right party Vox.

Three weeks after the local elections that took place on 26 May, José Luis Martínez Almeida of the PP was voted in as mayor with the support of councillors from both Ciudadanos (Cs) and Vox. Deputy mayor of Madrid is Begoña Villacís of the Cs party.

A total of 30 councillors voted for Martínez at Madrid’s City Hall, more than the absolute majority needed. He replaces former judge Manuela Carmena, elected in 2015 on a left-wing citizen platform.

The PP will therefore govern the Spanish capital in a coalition with Cs, with the support of Vox.

A similar three-way deal has been reached in at least one other city hall in Spain, as the far-right Vox party gains ground around the country.

Pablo Casado and José Luis Martínez-Almeida
Pablo Casado, left, leader of the People’sParty (PP) and José Luis Martínez-Almeida, the new Mayor of Madrid. (Photo courtesy of PP / pp.es)

The PP and Ciudadanos have already signed an 80-point deal over how they want to govern Madrid.

One of these points calls for an overhaul of Madrid Central, a traffic restriction scheme in the city centre implemented by Carmena.

The restrictions, which aim to reduce gas emissions by 40% by encouraging people to take public transport or bicycles, sees drivers banned from accessing the centre and fined if they do.

In the agreement, the PP and Ciudadanos agreed ‘a moratorium on the imposition of fines’ from 1 July whilst they review the scheme.

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