The Government did not request technical reports to impose masks abroad
The file of the decree that imposes the use of masks abroad confirms what the Government tried to hide: it did not request technical reports on the convenience of the measure. ABC has had access to the documentation dossier sent by the Government to Congress and in it, in addition to not including any scientific endorsement, the Executive indicates that the only report evacuated for the drafting of the decree is the normative impact analysis report. However, when the Government imposed the masks abroad, it assured that it had the endorsement of the technicians.
The file consists of 39 pages and was sent to the Lower House on December 28 by the Secretary of State
of Relations with the Cortes, Rafael Simancas. It includes an “analysis of the alternatives” in which the Government rules out “not carrying out any action” because “it would entail not adjusting the sanitary measures to the epidemiological reality of the country.” The Executive also justifies having avoided the consultation, hearing and public information procedures provided for in the ordinary process because the imposition of the masks had to be “incorporated quickly” and their “extraordinary and urgent need” was “sufficiently justified”.
However, a few pages later, the Government assures that the economic repercussion that the measure will have on the activities of production and sale of masks “will not be relevant”. And this because the decree does not impose “any circumstance added to its use” but rather its mandatory nature in “certain spaces and situations, specifically, outdoors.” As for the impact it may have on children and adolescents, the Government assures that it will be “nil”. The dossier concludes with the Executive’s refusal to assess the results of the measure: “Ex post evaluation mechanisms are not contemplated,” underlines the regulatory report.
The absence of scientific backing complicates the validation of this decree in Congress. The Socialists assure that they are working to obtain sufficient support, but, for now, their reference partners, ERC and EH Bildu, maintain strong criticism of the measure. Citizens close the door to negotiate this decree with the Government and Vox has already announced its rejection. The PP, for its part, asked the Executive for a copy of the scientific reports that supposedly endorsed the measure, but it has not yet received a response and the file sent to Congress confirms that it will not receive one.
The majority feeling within Congress is that the measure may decline on February 1 due to lack of support, although the Socialists insist that there is still time. His intention is to raise this decree to the extraordinary plenary session to be held next week, although the calendar is not closed and could jump to the following week if support is lacking.
The negotiation, however, has a trap since the socialists included in the mask decree a payment for part of the pensioners. This extra is scheduled to be distributed before April 1, 2022 to respect the interannual percentages of the CPI to recipients of benefits for widowhood, dependent children, disability equal to or greater than 65% or non-contributory. “Whoever overturns the decree will have to explain to pensioners why does he leave them without that pay ”, emphasize government sources, who entrust their strategy to this letter. The decree also includes measures to strengthen health.