What Happens Now?

Partido Andalucista, the political party that has had my support since my arrival in Frigiliana, is no more. An exraordinary congress held on 12th September voted by an overwhelming majority to wind up the party. It now exists simply as a legal entity offering protection to its 391 consejales sitting in local government across Andalucia. After fifty years of existence, it has gone.
So where now can I ally myself to a political cause?
Partido Andalucista, as is implicit in its name, existed as a party seeking always to secure just and equal treatment for Andalucía within Spain. It did not seek independence like some regional parties. It supported a single, federalist Spanish state within which Andalucía could progress as one of the seventeen autonomous communities which make up Spain. Geographically the largest communidad, Andalucía has shared with its neighbour, Extremadura, a continuing historic poverty even as the rest of Spain flourished until the economic crisis of 2009. 
The current national government (the right-wing Partido Popular, led by Mariano Rajoy) is mired in corruption, as is the left-wing main opposition party, PSOE. There will be a general election before the end of the year, and the widely held expectation is that one of these two parties will form the next government. Not because the mass of Spanish voters think that would be a good thing, but because in a similar attitude to that in the UK, the question is which is the least worst option? Do you vote PSOE to get rid of PP, or do you vote PP to stop PSOE; negative politics with low expectations.
On the other hand, three new parties have come onto the scene and sparked interest in the possibility of positive change. The longest-established is seven year old UPyD, which stands for union (a single Spanish state), a progressive stance, and democracy. It began life in the Basque region to challenge the separatist movement of which ETA was a prominent feature. Ciudadanos (Citizens) likewise began life as a regional party, Ciutadans, opposing the Catalan independence movement, but more recently has been finding support across Spain. And finally there is Podemos (We Can) which is the offspring of the Indignados movement, which elsewhere became Occupy. Podemos is a left-wing party which aims for citizen democracy. It is well to the left of PSOE, and probably has its true roots in anarchism which has always had a small but vocal following in Spain. It's not for me.
In the UK, where I am still registered to vote in national and European elections, I am a paid up member of the Liberal Democrat Party, which in Europe is a member of the ALDE (Association of Liberals and Democrats in Europe) group. Both UPyD and Ciudadans MEPs belong to this grouping, so one of those two would seem a logical choice. Though both describe themselves as centre parties, Ciudadans tends to take a right of centre stance, whereas UPyD is to the left of centre.
More investigation will be called for, but my gut feeling is that my new Spanish political home will be with UPyD.

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