Left-wing media baron launches surprise attack on PM
8 October 2007, MADRID - AFP - The head of Spain's left-leaning media group Prisa, which traditionally supports the Socialist government, Monday launched a surprising attack on Prime Minister Jose Luis Rodriguez Zapatero.
8 October 2007
MADRID - AFP - The head of Spain's left-leaning media group Prisa, which traditionally supports the Socialist government, Monday launched a surprising attack on Prime Minister Jose Luis Rodriguez Zapatero.
"He is chiefly responsible for the fact that policy successes are not being reflected in opinion polls," Juan Luis Cebrian told a press briefing in Madrid.
Six months before legislative elections in March in which Zapatero is seeking a new mandate, opinion polls give the Socialist Party a slight edge over the conservative opposition Popular Party.
"The communication policies have been a failure," said the head of Prisa, which owns the left-leaning daily El Pais.
He said the government had failed to sell its successes to the Spanish public, in particular on the economy.
El Pais last month criticized a government plan to help young people rent property, saying it was "very irritating" and "evidently with the election in mind."
Cebrian also attacked another leftist media group, Mediapro, saying it is "close to Zapatero," whereas Prisa claims independence from the government.
Mediapro is fighting television operator Sogecable, part of the Prisa group, for the rights to broadcast football matches. Last month, it also launched a new leftist newspaper, Publico, seen as a potential rival to El Pais.
The Spanish economy is one of the fastest-growing in Europe which has helped to cut the unemployment rate down to 7.95 percent in the second quarter, its lowest level since the end of 1978.
Subject: Spanish news