Publication: Sunday, December 6, 2020 6:52 a.m.
The value of being the father of the Constitution can be incalculable. Design and influence the legal text that protects the rule of law. Especially when the country in question, Spain, is trying to get out of a dictatorship and totalitarianisms give their last blows.
This honor, in our country, was only obtained by seven people, seven men. Miguel Herrero Rodríguez de Miñón (UCD), Gabriel Cisneros Laborda (UCD), José Pedro Pérez Llorca (UCD), Gregorio Peces-Barba (PSOE), Manuel Fraga Iribarne (AP), Jordi Solé Turá (PCE-PSUC) and Miquel Roca Junyent (Convergence). All of them prestigious jurists or intellectuals, closely linked to the parties that make up the constituent courts.
But among them, who shared this dignity, only one was paid to do so. He was Herrero de Miñón, a strongman of the UCD in the process and intellectual architect of the skeleton of Magna Carta. He is also the one who is still alive, with Miquel Roca.
The collection, received in two installments, was signed “honestly” by Herrero
This is how the journalist Abel Hernández, a privileged witness of the time, reveals it in the book Secretos de la Transición (Plaza y Valdés). Hernández, in conversation with LaSexta, details the anecdote.
Herrero’s overtime with the Constitution
“Herrero asked for a bonus because he was overworked, a great job: of the seven speakers, it was he who worked the most, especially at the beginning,” explains the author. “He worked overtime to circumvent the Constitution. He was a great lawyer, he was a smart guy. I spent more time on this than in normal meetings “
According to Hernández, it was a “fairly high salary for the time”. And quite controversial. Suárez’s secretary, Aurelio Delgado, who was also his brother-in-law, refused to give it to him. “He went to see the president and he said no, that he wasn’t giving him money from the reserved funds. But Suárez accepted and said yes “.
The rest of the parents of the Constitution did not know
The collection was made in two different installments, and Herrero de Miñón signed the receipts “honestly”. The money came from meager reserved funds, justified funds, but without budget specification. “Not only for having drafted the Constitution, but for the overwork it carried,” said Hernández.
“The rest of the parents of the Constitution, I don’t think they knew,” says the author. “I don’t know if he said it.”
The current Constitution, the third plan
Miguel Herrero Rodríguez de Miñón was, according to the book, “a brilliant young lawyer, with a reputation for knowing everything and believing himself to be the smartest of the class, that the minister [Landelino Lavilla] he had become his technical secretary general and in whom he had put all his complacency ”.
Herrero de Miñón, brilliant jurist with political ambition
“He was a man loaded with political and economic ambitions and stuck to a wallet full of papers.” For this reason, the first idea that the UCD had after rejecting the idea of King Juan Carlos to create “a kind of constitutional charter” through a series of notables – who had to choose among the royal senators – who could serve very Either different ideologies, whether inside or outside parliament, is that Lavilla and Herrero have drawn up a very brief draft constitution.
But they didn’t get approval from the rest of the groups. “Socialists and Communists categorically rejected the plan of Landelino and his precious assistant,” Hernández recounts in the book.
It was mainly Miquel Roca and Felipe González who led this no. And the socialist claimed that the Cortes had sufficient capacity to make a constitution. Thus, the final plan was chosen: a Magna Carta created by a presentation of seven members within the Constitutional Commission of the Congress who would be in charge of the production of the text on this first draft that Herrero had prepared.