Under Article 155 of the Constitution, the head of the Spanish government dismissed Catalonian President Carles Puigdemont and his cabinet on October 27, dissolved the regional parliament and called an early autonomic election on December 21.
Rajoy traveled to Barcelona, the capital of Catalonia, today to support Xavier Garcia Albiol, the candidate from his party, the right-wing Popular Party (PP), in next month’s election.
In his first visit to Catalonia after taking over control of that prosperous autonomous region, a measure that has been challenged by several social sectors, Rajoy noted that he had taken that step after ‘having exhausted all ways’.
‘The respect for freedom and coexistence had to be recovered and it was urgent to reestablish the government and general interest,’ said Rajoy in defense of his polemic decision, supported by the Spanish Socialist Workers’ Party (PSOE) and the center-leftwing Ciudadanos.
‘We want a mass voting on December 21 to start up a new political phase to normality, which will give all security and certainty, which is what people want,’ he said when presenting Garcia Albiol’s candidacy.
Rajoy called on what he described as the non-pro-independence ‘silent majority’ to vote on December 21.