What has been one of the worst guarded secrets in Barcelona’s local politics in recent times, will see the light of day next Tuesday. The former French prime minister, Manuel Valls, will officially announce his plan to run for mayor in next year’s municipal elections. In a gesture that leaves very little to chance, his campaign already shows signs of being planned to the millimeter, with the social networks up and running and yesterday posting a semi-enigmatic photograph of a pair of feet placed squarely on the city’s iconic decorative paving tiles, leaving little to doubt abut his intensions.
Over the last few weeks, Valls has multiplied his contacts with personalities and members of civil society and the economic world in Barcelona in an effort to get a better lay of the land. He has also taken the opportunity to let slip a few generic reflections about the city. Despite attempted head-hunting by Ciutadans and Societat Civil, Valls’ project appears to be one which is not tied down to ideologic party structure nor focused on national politics. Some of those he has talked to were more within the orbit of the PSC with some of them now forming part of his team. While it was first Cs who put forward his name as a prospective candidate, recent contact with Rivera’s party have been scarce.