Sunday, April 13, 2008

There's no news today except more reactions to Zap's new cabinet. Our friends at La Vanguardia have a good few opinions:

1) Zap's inner circle consists of De la Vega, Solbes, Rubalcaba, PSOE general secretary Jose Blanco, PSOE Congressional leader (and ex-defense minister) Jose Antonio Alonso, Jose Enrique Serrano, who is Zap's chief of staff, and David Taguas, Zap's top economics advisor.
2) Maleni Alvarez didn't get fired, and Bibiana Aido got a cabinet post, because of the influence of Andalusian party boss Manuel Chaves.
3) Zap and Montilla do not get along either politically or personally, and Montilla had to swallow Alvarez's continuance in her post. Montilla's reward for the big Socialist victory in Catalonia were the cabinet posts for Chacon and Celestino Corbacho, even though Corbacho is more a Zap guy than a Montilla guy.
4) Elena Salgado at Public Administration is considered to be very competent by political insiders.
5) Jesus Caldera, Zap's campaign manager, wanted to be deputy premier in charge of social issues. Zap, who doesn't seem impressed with Caldera at all, gave him the boot and sent him off to set up a PSOE think tank, a copy of the PP's FAES.
6) The purpose of the new Ministry of Equality will be to establish gender quotas in the private sector and to fight against "machista violence."
7) Zap is going to make a big deal out of environmentalism and climate change and all that Greenie crap.
8) Nobody likes Moratinos or Alvarez.
9) Apparently the big favor Miguel Sebastian did for Zap was agreeing to run for mayor of Madrid against Gallardon on short notice after Jose Bono bailed out on him. Cristina Garmendia at Research and Development and Beatriz Corredor at Housing are Sebastian's people, as well.

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