Finance minister insinuates opposition parties haven’t paid taxes

Socialist spokeswoman describes Montoro’s remarks as unacceptable

After railing at Spanish actors for moving abroad for tax reasons last week, Finance Minister Cristóbal Montoro on Wednesday insinuated that unnamed opposition political parties had also not paid their taxes. Pointing to the area in Congress occupied by Socialist lawmakers, Montoro said: “You should all understand, all political rivals, and all parties, that you should also faithfully pay your taxes.”

In response, the main opposition Socialist Party congressional spokeswoman, Soraya Rodríguez, described Montoro’s comments as “unacceptable.” She accused the minister of using information available to him as a result of the office he holds to make “threats” in Congress.

Rodríguez said if the minister was aware of any infractions, “what he should do is enforce the law because otherwise the person who is failing to perform his duties is the minister himself.”

Sources at Montoro’s department said the minister was not referring to any lawmaker in particular but to “political groups” which had fallen behind with their taxes However, they said they did not know what groups he was referring to. “That the minister will know,” a source said.

In December of last year, Montoro also took a pot shot at the media for handing out “moral lessons” about a controversial tax amnesty Montoro’s department put in place last year when they themselves were in arrears. Montoro also declined to name names on that occasion. “The law prohibits the ministry from making mention of the tax situation of specific taxpayers but allows it to speak about the situation in a sector,” he said.

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