Moreno Bonilla is measured with Ayuso
The presidents of Murcia, Fernando López Miras;  from Andalusia, Juan Manuel Moreno Bonilla;  from the Community of Madrid, Isabel Díaz Ayuso;  the then president of Galicia, Alberto Núñez Feijoo;  and that of Castilla y León, Alfonso Fernández Mañueco, during the 16th Autonomous Congress of the Andalusian PP last March.
The presidents of Murcia, Fernando López Miras; from Andalusia, Juan Manuel Moreno Bonilla; from the Community of Madrid, Isabel Díaz Ayuso; the then president of Galicia, Alberto Núñez Feijoo; and that of Castilla y León, Alfonso Fernández Mañueco, during the 16th Autonomous Congress of the Andalusian PP last March.miguel angel molina (EFE)

The two souls of the PP are measured in the elections of June 19 in Andalusia. The Andalusian president, Juan Manuel Moreno Bonilla, submits to the examination of the polls a strategy that he shares with the new leader of the PP, Alberto Núñez Feijóo. Both believe that the best option to defeat the left is to present, even if only formally, a project that is almost de-ideologized and focused on the economy, explained in a moderate tone. The Andalusian candidate of the PP wields that approach against the aggressive style and “cultural battle” of the president of Madrid, the also popular Isabel Díaz Ayuso, who until now, saving Feijóo in Galicia, has the best result of the right in regional elections. Next Sunday, in the PP they will compare the result of Moreno Bonilla with that of Ayuso – and how much Vox separates or approaches – and they will take note. At stake is the strategy of the Conservatives to reach La Moncloa and even, further into the future, which leadership stands out in the party for the day after the Feijóo stage.

Moreno Bonilla knows that his result will be looked at with a magnifying glass in the PP. If it approaches the figures of the Madrid leader – who touched 45% of the votes in May 2021 – and manages, like her, to govern alone (with external support from Vox but without integrating it into the Executive), the most The PP’s hardliner will have to assume that both strategies are valid. The moderate and the so-called “cultural battle” or ideological. The Conservative Party will therefore have less incentive to swing back to the right. “It would be very positive, because an option would clearly open up: that there is another way”, they emphasize in the environment of the Andalusian president.

On the other hand, if Moreno Bonilla stays away from the Ayuso model, “the party may revolve around her project,” the same sources fear. In principle, Feijóo is clear that his model is that of his Andalusian friend and ally, but the hawks of the PP believe that just talking about the economy does not win. And that at some point the popular leader will have to abandon the turn to the center and enter into a total clash with Pedro Sánchez. “Only 30% of the population finds out about the economic discourse plagued with technicalities, it doesn’t even reach the rest,” they say in these areas of the Madrid PP.

Surveys anticipate that the conflict Internal will be won by the Madrid leader. Ayuso achieved almost 45% of the vote in the regional elections of May 2021. Moreno Bonilla would be almost ten points below, at 36.7% (according to the 40dB survey for EL PAÍS and SER), or almost fifteen, at 31.5% given by the CIS. That result would leave him six or seven seats short of the absolute majority (Ayuso brushed it with four seats to go). But the most important thing is the correlation with Vox. The leader of the PP in Madrid left the extreme right with 9% of the vote and 13 seats. Surveys indicate that in Andalusia the ultras will not fall below 15% and, according to the CIS, they are in a position to exceed 20 deputies.

Andalusia is a much more difficult place for the right than Madrid, they maintain in the Andalusian PP. It is a sociologically center-left territory and where the PSOE had been governing for almost four decades. In the PP everyone recognizes Moreno Bonilla “the sociological change” Andalusian, but he is also required to meet expectations and eat Vox. “He is going to be judged by whether or not he wins more seats than the entire left together. If he manages to govern like Ayuso, perfect. But if he doesn’t do it and he has to put them in the Government, the PP has a problem”, points out a leader close to Ayuso. The problem for Feijóo, they interpret in sectors of the PP, is that conservative voters believe that it is the same to take the PP or Vox ballot because, after all, they will govern together.

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The result of the president of Andalusia will also have other readings of internal relevance in the PP. The Andalusians are the first elections of the it was Feijoo and will help to consolidate or weaken their leadership in the face of Hurricane Ayuso. “If the Andalusians go as they have to go, Ayuso has no chance of making a war. She has put the national brake. In her environment they hoped that she would arrive after Casado, but without realizing that the strategy they put in place also left her out of the race, ”analyzes a veteran leader. The Madrid leader rules out any national ambition, according to her closest circle, but continues to set her own profile – this very week, with her crusade against the “sectarianism” of textbooks – and continues to represent an alternative for the toughest sectors right.

And Moreno Bonilla also has ambitions. They know it in the narrowest circle of Feijóo, where they point out that in the future, when the succession battle opens, it will be fought by Ayuso and Moreno Bonilla. There is a long way to go for that, the Galician leader is a newcomer to the presidency of the PP, and he has respect and auctoritas, but in the opposition results are demanded. “Feijóo has two bullets as long as in the first elections he runs for, he far surpasses Pablo Casado. I think he will be president in these, but he has room to go to a second call, ”defends a leader close to the leader. A resounding success on 19-J, in any case, would catapult the Andalusian president to the first level in national politics.

Feijóo has been leaving signs of his special proximity to the southern baron. And at the headquarters on Calle Génova he has placed Andalusian leaders in key positions. “Feijóo thinks that he has to be surrounded by a second row in which Ayuso is not alone”, slides a leader he trusts. In this context, the leader has left a message in the Andalusian campaign that can have double readings and that points out the path of projection for his friend Moreno Bonilla. “Let’s vote for Juanma not only to make him what he already is, the best president that the Junta de Andalucía has ever had,” he exhorted at one of his first meetings. “Let’s make Juanma one of the benchmark politicians in Spain.”

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