Zapatero calls on Socialists to “listen to and support” Rubalcaba

The former PM’s words come at a time when a leadership debate is brewing inside the party

Madrid -
Zapatero (c) with Rubalcaba and Elena Valenciano on Sunday.
Zapatero (c) with Rubalcaba and Elena Valenciano on Sunday. LUIS SEVILLANO (EL PAÍS)

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.

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