Former Socialist Prime Minister José Luis Rodríguez Zapatero on Sunday asked his party to “support and listen” to the group’s current leader, Alfredo Pérez Rubalcaba.
In a clear sign of support for his former interior minister, Zapatero reminded Socialists at a ceremony at party headquarters in Madrid that it “would be good for everyone” to stand by Rubalcaba.
The former prime minister’s words come at a time when there is a leadership debate brewing inside the party. In an interview with EL PAÍS, Andalusia regional premier José Antonio Griñán said that Rubalcaba should call a primary soon if he doesn’t intend to run in the next general elections in two years.
Zapatero, who has kept a low profile since leaving office, was on Sunday awarded his party’s Carmen Cerdeira award for his defense of equality and same-sex marriage.