Feijóo buries the last trace of the legacy of a non-existent Casado for the PP

There is no doubt about the honorability of the companions of the party. Although there is evidence, even indications of irregularities that must be clarified. It is not investigated, it is not questioned and much less aired. Whatever happens. It is the first commandment of the Popular Party. Although corruption sentenced the Government of Mariano Rajoy and its shock wave led them to the worst historical result in an election. Although an attempt was made to build a new leadership with promises of renewal. Putting the focus on that corruption was one of the reasons that led to Pablo Casado, who remains unpublished since his final goodbye, on April 1. This week, his successor, Alberto Núñez Feijóo, has liquidated the last trace of his legacy: the sale of the historic national headquarters at number 13 on Calle de Génova in Madrid.

The decision was more or less sung. Feijóo was very critical of the decision that Casado communicated, somewhat hastily, after the debacle of the Catalan elections in February 2021. The PP went from four to three seats, thus confirming the downward trend of the last decade: in 2012, 19 deputies sat in the Parliament. In addition, Citizens doubled the result of the PP. And its spin-off, Vox, almost quadrupled them by getting 11 representatives.

The result set off alarms in Genoa. The coalition government resisted the economic and social ravages of the pandemic better than expected. Despite taking the fall of Pedro Sánchez for sure since his very investiture, the PSOE and United We Can hold out in the central Executive and a PSC led precisely by the Minister of Health who had managed the first year of the health crisis, Salvador Illa, achieved for the first time the victory in votes in regional elections in Catalonia.

On February 16 of that same year, two days after the elections, Casado announced by surprise that he is putting up for sale what is the party's national headquarters since Manuel Fraga's Popular Alliance. But, in addition, the then leader of the PP related the building of Genoa, 13 with the corrupt inheritance of the PP, pointed to his predecessors in office, including Mariano Rajoy himself, and highlighted the complex economic situation that the organization was going through, whose leadership he assumed after the motion of censure motivated by the first sentence of the Gürtel case that judicially accredited the existence of a box B in the PP. That is, black money.

A black money with which a profound reform of that same national headquarters was paid. In fact, the trial that ruled that the works in Genoa were paid in part with funds from box B began that same week in February 2021. And Casado was already quite clear what the conclusion was going to be: the PP, condemned for the second time.

The then president of the Xunta de Galicia, who in 2018 had flirted with the option of presenting himself to the congress that elected Casado as leader of the PP against Soraya Sáenz de Santamaría, did not hesitate to criticize his national president. Alberto Núñez Feijóo raised, at first, that the real reason for the sale of Genoa had nothing to do with corruption, with the trial or with the Catalan elections, but with the bad economic situation that they were going through.

"A lot of money is due," said the Galician. An idea that supported José Luis Martínez Almeida, at that time national spokesman as well as mayor of Madrid. "There are logistical and economic issues," he said.

Feijóo also resorted to the classic manual used in a corruption case: everyone is (we are) equal. "If every time a party has problems with some people, it has to leave the place where it is, it is because there was no headquarters left here," said the current president of the PP.

It does not matter what the sentences say and the recent consequences of the acts of the party leaders do not matter. There is no mention of the noose at the hangman's house. An approach that was established with total clarity in the intense weeks that ended with Casado expelled by the barons of the party in an unprecedented event in the PP.

On March 1, the National Board of Directors of the PP was held, which convened the XX Congress (extraordinary) and which certified the end of Casado. Before hundreds of representatives from all over Spain, Ayuso asked to expel those who had allegedly maneuvered against her by promoting espionage of which nothing has been proven. No longer the participation of Casado. Not even who ordered it or who started it, if that ever happened.

The only space where an attempt has been made to shed some light on the matter, the investigation commission opened in the Madrid City Council before the possible participation of personnel contracted by the Government of Almeida, ended without any convincing conclusion. Ayuso did not appear, nor did his commission agent's brother, not even Ángel Carromero, accused of inducing espionage on the president. Of course, no indication appeared that pointed to Pablo Casado as responsible for the hypothetical plot. Nor to his number two, Teodoro García Egea.

Feijóo did not speak at that Board of Directors. But he did speak to the journalists at the exit: "Isabel Díaz Ayuso is an unquestionable asset of the PP and he is an honorable personHours later, Esteban González Pons, already in charge of organizing the succession congress at the time, underpinned this message: "The leadership of the PP trusts absolutely, completely, in the honorability of Isabel Díaz Ayuso."

Both phrases meant closing the waterway opened by Casado a few days earlier in an interview on the Cope chain that the former president of the PP will never regret enough, because it marked his end. "When 700 people died a day can you contract with your sister and receive 286,000 euros?", he asked himself in the microphones of the radio of the Episcopal Conference. Ayuso, who was listening, did not think twice, phoned and intervened.

The course of that conflict is history and it is written. On the way to Genoa, Feijóo stopped in all the autonomous communities. In Madrid, Ayuso was rehabilitated. The leader has assumed all power in the region and has made a PP to her full measure in which she has even allowed be benevolent with an Almeida surrounded by his own problems with pandemic commissioners.

In the PP there are no longer reproaches for these behaviors, nor are they used in internal wars. Now "honorability" is defended until proven otherwise. Ayuso mentioned with Casado already evicted Rita Barberá, a moral slab on the leaders of the PP of yesterday and today. The former mayor of Valencia whom Rajoy, his friend, dropped because of corruption. She died alone, in a hotel room in Madrid. Now, the PP tries to recover her memory and brandish her innocence, unprovable because, as she died, her criminal responsibilities were extinguished. Yes indeed, its number two in the City Council is processed.

But that is no longer talked about. It is the only thing that Feijóo has kept from the decision that Casado made in February 2021: not to talk about corruption anymore. From the past yes, but only to glorify it. To Rajoy, for example, under whose mandate the Gürtel case broke out and the bonuses with black money to party leaders were discovered. Or in whose government the parapolice political brigade was set up that illegally investigated political rivals, such as Catalan separatists or leaders of Podemos. A brigade supposedly involved in Operation Kitchen, aimed at destroying evidence of PP corruption.

All this happened at the Genoa headquarters that the PP was about to take to a building on Paseo de la Castellana, an operation that was cut short. That idea has been abandoned. "Genoa belongs to the affiliates, the buildings are not to blame for anything," said the party's number three, Elías Bendodo. If Genoa belongs to the affiliates, Genoa is the PP. And the PP, Genoa.

Meanwhile, the ideologue of the sale remains unaccounted for. Pablo Casado said goodbye to the PP on April 2. And until today. No sign. Although this weekend he can be seen in Washington, at a meeting of the Bilderberg Club, as reported by The confidential.

The few in the PP who maintain contact, those who were faithful to him until the end, say that he is more concerned about the future of those who were by his side in the worst moments than his own. That he asks how he fares with those still surviving in the organization he once presided over. And that he continues to think about everything that happened to him since, at the end of last summer, he received some papers that questioned the "honorability" of a colleague and friend. That "honorability" of which he no longer allows himself to doubt in the PP and that was the curve in which a Casado crashed, who was already seen with half a foot in Moncloa.

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