SPAIN: New Government Working To Reverse Progressive Reforms

Spain’s Popular Party was elected late last year in a landslide and they are already working to reverse the many progressive reforms made by the Socialists. Gay marriage isn’t yet openly up for repeal, but observers worry that day is coming soon.

People’s Party rising star Justice Minister Alberto Ruíz Gallardón, a former mayor of Madrid and one of the most popular politicians in Spain, announced he would soon introduce a bill to overturn the changes the Socialists made to Spain’s abortion law, reverting to the 1985 version.

According to the current version, approved in 2010, teenagers aged 16 and older can have an abortion without parental permission in some cases and don’t need to meet pre-approved circumstances, such as rape or mental illness, as long as it’s during the first trimester. The People’s Party’s reforms will reverse both changes, Mr. Gallardón reiterated in a radio interview on Feb. 1, although he didn’t offer specifics other than it would mirror the 1985 version of the law.

And on Jan. 30, Education Minister José Ignacio Wert announced that a new law would replace the civic education curriculum that Socialist introduced in 2006, which included lessons on religious, racial, and sexual tolerance that were loudly criticized by the Catholic Church and the country’s extreme right. Mr. Wert said he would eliminate “issues that controversial and susceptible to ideological indoctrination,” although he didn’t offer more details.

The Popular Party’s new dominance of the legislature effectively means that it can institute any changes it wants to without interference.