Chilean Congress bails out Giorgio Jackson, Boric’s greatest political ally

Chilean Congress bails out Giorgio Jackson, Boric’s greatest political ally

Chilean President Gabriel Boric punches Giorgio Jackson in January 2022.Chilean President Gabriel Boric punches Giorgio Jackson in January 2022. Esteban Felix (AP)

The Chilean Congress has bailed out the minister historically closest to President Gabriel Boric, engineer Giorgio Jackson, in charge of social development. This Thursday, the House of Representatives voted on a constitutional charge against him brought by the far-right Republican Party, which called for his resignation and that he would be barred from holding public office for five years. Parliamentarians, however, gave the government pause. The initiative was rejected with 76 votes against, 68 votes in favor and six abstentions. “Political arguments were made in the room which, barring certain epithets, I accept with humility and consider some of the criticisms that can serve to improve our management,” said Jackson, 35, who was a leader in the college movement. from 2011 along with Boric, later MP for eight years, founder of the Broad Front and duo in the 2021 presidential campaign.

Jackson is no longer formally part of La Moneda’s first decision-making circle, the political committee. After the defeat of the proposal for a new constitution in the September 4 referendum, Boric removed him from the Ministry of the General Secretariat of the Government, which regulates relations with Parliament, precisely because of the problems he had with the congressmen of different sections. It was the first major reshuffle of his cabinet, requiring the president to remove figures with immense political affinity from key departments, such as Jackson moving to the Department of Social Development. But he continues to hold sway over the president, a fact not overlooked by the extreme opposition. Once sessions resumed in 2023, José Antonio Kast’s Republican Party, which has 10 lawmakers and as many allies, reversed this impeachment process against Jackson for various chapters.

They accused him of “abuses of authority and power, reflected in a Minister of State who, because of his closeness to the President of the Republic and his apparent immobility, has exceeded the limits of his own authority and violated the political constitution,” the letter said of 150 pages, in which the reasons for his dismissal were based on various controversial episodes in Jackson’s portfolio, such as a subordinate who accused him of pressuring her to adopt certain types of definitions. But ultimately, the Republican Party’s indictment aimed to use a moment of political weakness in the administration to attack a person close to the President who, for various reasons, does not enjoy the greatest sympathy, even from his political allies of socialism.

“Our scale of values ​​and principles around politics is not only a far cry from the previous government, but I believe it compares to a generation ahead that could be identified with the same spectrum of the political spectrum, such as Center-Left and Left. We address the issues with less euphemism and more openly,” Jackson assured in August of the moderate sectors that were part of the Concertación and now sit in government, in key ministries like the interior ministry or the finance ministry. The unfortunate phrase heightened tensions.

Jackson will also not be forgiven for supporting 11 out of 14 constitutional charges as an opposition MP, some against former President Sebastián Piñera. What happened in November 2021 particularly disgusts him, when a parliamentarian from his sector spoke for hours in the chamber to get Jackson to reach Congress and support the constitutional impeachment against the president, in a journey that Jackson even explored about social networks radiated.

Crucial to today’s result were the abstentions of four opposition lawmakers who, unlike the rest of their sector, chose not to take on the Republican Party. For the government, however, the complexity is not over. Next week, the Chamber of Deputies will examine the constitutional charges against former Justice Minister Marcela Ríos over the controversy over the 13 people pardoned by President Boric on December 30. However, this attack is being promoted by the entire opposition coalition Chile Vamos from the traditional right.

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