Felipe VI found unexpected support on Thursday from the president of a neighboring country with a political system based on the republican model. The Portuguese president, Marcelo Rebelo de Sousa, praised the figure of the monarch during the inauguration of the La Toja Forum that these days is held on the island of A Toxa (Pontevedra). During the first bars of his speech, De Sousa stopped to gloss his feelings about the Spanish monarch in the following terms: “I praise in his majesty the character, honesty, thoughtfulness and sense of state that have contributed so much to unity of the kingdom of Spain in this period as difficult and as painful as the pandemic, the economic stoppage and the social crisis have been. ”
41 men and four women from bipartisanship and finance seclude themselves on a hot spring island to reflect on the post-COVID world
The words of the Portuguese president motivated Felipe VI to do something unusual in any of his public appearances: to leave the script written by Zarzuela to expressly thank the gesture of affection that he had just received. From his passage through the island of A Toxa, Felipe VI has left the omen that the coronavirus crisis may become an opportunity to transform the economy. As he has been doing in similar appointments, the monarch has avoided the press and has limited himself to reading each line of the speech he had prepared, except for the improvisation to thank his predecessor’s gesture in the use of the word.
But the compliments for Felipe VI have come from more places. In the same act, the president of the Xunta, Alberto Núñez Feijóo, did not want to miss the opportunity to express his “affection” for the king and for “the constitutional monarchy.” A feeling that, he said, “is shared by all Galicians”. In veiled reference to the debates on the state model in Spain, Feijóo has slipped a play on words to imply that the parliamentary monarchy is in our country to stay: “My president of the republic is Marcelo Rebelo de Sousa.”
The La Toja Forum is a meeting of bipartisan politicians and finance representatives that aims to reflect on how to face the economy that comes in the post-COVID era. The meeting is attended by former Presidents Felipe González and Mariano Rajoy who will speak in the coming days. Rajoy, who is already on the island, imitated the monarch, avoiding at all times the journalists who swarmed among the main attendees in search of some reflection apart from those that have been slipping in the speeches of the first day.