Category Archives: Esteban Gonzalez Pons

Spain’s political parties attempt to harness internet as electoral tool

Ever since the Obama campaign ignited America thanks to its creative use of social networks and the internet, European political parties have tried to ape the success in their own general elections. The UK’s last general election in 2010 was billed as the “Internet Election”, but the effect of the internet turned out to be a bit of a damp squib compared to expectations, and in comparison to the 2008 US Presidential elections.

And now, with their own general election just ten weeks away,Spain’s main parties are looking to extract maximum advantage from the World Wide Web. Yesterday, PP spokesman Esteban Gonzalez Pons, revealed that his leader and presidential candidate Mariano Rajoy was fully prepared for a “Twitter debate” with the PSOE candidate, Alfredo Pérez Rubalcaba.

And this morning the PSOE themselves have launched their own internet initiative, launching a special web portal for people to communicate their “ideas, opinions, solutions and proposals”. This virtual political conference will be running from 30th September to 2nd October, and can be accessed here.

However, the political parties’ internet presence is on the whole pathetic, compared to other Western democracies. All the main parties have decent websites and tick the boxes with their Twitter pages, Facebook accounts etc, but their efforts so far have been, frankly, unimaginative.

In addition, very few elected politicians have their own personal website or blog, and there are few internet debating sites of any renown outside of those provided by the main stream media.

So although these initiatives are welcome in part of the much-needed process of bringing citizens closer to their politicians in Spain, it would be safe to assume that the internet is not going to change the course of the election in any significant way.

The first party that truly cracks the problem of engaging effectively with voters online will be set to reap the benefits

PP puts job creation at heart of campaign

The Partido Popular has this morning outlined that their electoral campaign for November’s general election will centre on job creation, and they have sought to highlight how the governing PSOE lacks the political will to do the same.

At a press conference this morning, PP spokesman Esteban González Pons said: “Our intention is that the jobs that have been lost are recreated during the next parliament, and I think it should be obligatory for everyone to aspire to the same thing.”

He went on to criticise the socialist party for not aiming to create jobs. “Wanting to create jobs,” he added, “is the most natural and the best thing – and it is what the Spanish people are calling for. It seems indecent to me that a political party can present itself for election without saying that they aspire to help all the unemployed who have lost their jobs”.

Pons also used his press conference to take a swipe at the PSOE over the debate about re-imposing the Wealth Tax, saying that it was not the PP which called it “obsolete”, but rather the PSOE themselves who took it away, and now wish to reinstate it.

“The Spanish people do not need more taxes”, Pons explained. “Spain needs reform, not just Government taking more money from the pockets of citizens.”