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The Electoral Board initiates sanctions proceedings against Sanchez for using Moncloa for an interview

Madrid / The Central Electoral Board (JEC) has agreed on Wednesday to open a sanctioning file to the President of the Government, Pedro Sanchez, for having made “electoral” statements at the Moncloa, in an interview with La Sexta (tv), and for upload a transcript of the same interview on the institutional website of the Spanish Government.

The decision of the JEC has been known within hours of the opening of the electoral campaign and it is the first time that the JEC has opened a sanction file for members of a functioning Government.

The JEC is the administrative body based in the Congress of Deputies that in Spain must ensure the transparency and objectivity of the electoral process, composed of eight magistrate members of the Supreme Court and five members of Law, Political Science and Sociology, active.

Sources from the Central Electoral Board have clarified to EFE that the decision has not been adopted because of the content of the responses Sanchez gives to the aforementioned chain, but for having made them at the Moncloa and with “the institutional set design” of the Presidency of the Government, that is, with the flags of Spain and the EU behind him.

The Board emphasizes that during the interview the socialist candidate in the elections of November 10 made “statements with electoral connotation”, but the opening of the file isn’t related to both that aspect and the place where he made them, the Moncloa Palace.

The JEC considers that Sanchez has violated Article 50.2 of the Organic Law of the General Electoral Regime (Loreg): he does the interview with “institutional means”, although it is prohibited in electoral time.

But, “singularly”, what the JEC sees as “a crucial fact” is that the interview is transcribed and posted on the Moncloa website. The sources point out that they retired the transcript days ago, as soon as they were notified of the appeal.

The JEC also opens disciplinary proceedings to the Minister Spokesperson

To these two aspects the Board adds another: that in an agreement of October 17 it warned the members of the Executive in functions that, if they returned to make “electoralist” statements in institutional places, they would open a sanctioning process.

For this same reason, at the meeting on Wednesday, the Board has also decided to open a file to the spokeswoman, Isabel Celaa, for some statements that she did in the press conference after the Council of Ministers last Friday.

For the Board they are “electoralists”, but what could not be sanctioned is not that, but that they have done them again in the press room of the Moncloa. The JEC warned Celaa of this at the beginning of the month.

As of tomorrow, the proceedings of the files will begin. Sanchez’s instructor will be the board member Eduardo de Porres, magistrate.

Processing and fines of between 300 and 3000 euros

According to sources from the Electoral Board, it will make a proposal for a sanctioning file and transmit it to Sanchez himself, who will have a period of “about ten days”, according to administrative procedures, to take the allegations he considers. Those claims cannot be signed by anyone on behalf of Sanchez; you have to sign them personally.

With the allegations on the table, the instructor will then make a final sanction proposal and, as before, send it to Sanchez so that, if he decides so, he will make allegations.

The maximum period to complete this process is three months, but “it is usually done in less time,” indicate the sources of the Electoral Board consulted. In any case, the sanction, if applicable, will be applied after the November 10 elections.

The penalty will range between 300 and 3,000 euros as Sanchez is an authority, as stated in the electoral regulations in article 153.1.

The JEC agrees with PP ‘partially’

It was the PP who denounced the “electoral” statements of the acting president, and the JEC has agreed “partially”, because it understands that he does not violate article 53 of the LOREG on the preservation of the principle of neutrality, but the 50, which prohibits the use of public means to organize or finance acts in which “the achievements made” by public authorities are discussed.

The file to Celaa will be taken as instructor by vocalist Jose Luis Seoane, magistrate.

The electoral arbitrator does not, however, see any breach of the law in the complaint of the PP before the JEC for the institutional declaration that Sanchez offered after completing the exhumation and reinhumation of the mortal remains of Francisco Franco. (October 31, 2019, EFE/Practica Español)

Comprehension

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Question 1
En el texto se dice que... (It's said in the text that...)  
A
es poco probable que la Junta Electoral Central vaya a expedientar a Pedro Sánchez.
B
la Junta Electoral Central de España desmiente que vaya a expedientar al presidente en funciones.
C
Pedro Sánchez será expedientado por la Junta Electoral Central de España.
Question 2
Según el texto, la JEC... (According to the text, the JEC...)  
A
le expedienta por haber realizado declaraciones de carácter electoral fuera de la Moncloa.
B
le expedienta por haber realizado declaraciones de carácter de electoral en la Moncloa.
C
le expedienta por haberse negado a ser entrevistado por un medio en la Moncloa.
Question 3
En el texto se dice que... (It's said in the text that...)  
A
no se permite que se realicen declaraciones 'electoralistas' en la Moncloa cuando se van a celebrar elecciones.
B
está permitido que se utilice la Moncloa con fines electoralistas cuando se van a celebrar unos comicios.
C
no hay ninguna ley que prohíba el uso electoralista de la Moncloa en periodo electoral.
Question 4
Según el texto... (According to the text...)  
A
no solo se realizó esa entrevista en la Moncloa sino que también se publicó la transcripción de la misma en la web de esta.
B
se desmiente que esa entrevista haya sido retirada de la web de la Moncloa.
C
aún se puede leer la transcripción de dicha entrevista en la página web de la Moncloa.
Question 5
En el texto se dice que...(It's said in the text that...)  
A
es poco probable que Celaá también vaya a ser experimentada por el mismo motivo que Sánchez.
B
se desmiente que Celaá también haya utilizado la Moncloa para hacer declaraciones de carácter electoral.
C
Celaá también será expedientada por haber realizado ese tipo de declaraciones en la Moncloa.
Question 6
Sobre la JEC se dice que... (About the JEC, it's said that...)  
A
se encarga de que haya transparencia y objetividad durante el proceso electoral.
B
no ve inadecuado que aparecieran las banderas de España y de la UE en esa entrevista.
C
da un plazo de 10 semanas a Sánchez para que alegue.
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