- By Joshua Keating
Joshua Keating is associate editor at Foreign Policy and the editor of the Passport blog. He has worked as a researcher, editorial assistant, and deputy Web editor since joining the FP staff in 2007. In addition to being featured in Foreign Policy, his writing has been published by the Washington Post, Newsweek International, Radio Prague, the Center for Defense Information, and Romania's Adevarul newspaper. He has appeared as a commentator on CNN International, C-Span, ABC News, Al Jazeera, NPR, BBC radio, and others. A native of Brooklyn, New York, he studied comparative politics at Oberlin College.
The non-binding and largely symbolic resolution – which states that the people of Catalonia have a democratic right to decide on their sovereignty – was passed with 85 votes for, 41 against and two abstentions in the 135-seat legislature. Two deputies were absent and five refused to vote.
The resolution was softened somewhat to appease several parties, removing a reference to a "new state" but it does seem to open the door toward a referendum on independence — a move that the Spanish government argues would be unconstitutional.
It also seems significant that the resolution was jointly presented by the ruling Convergence and Union party and the opposition Republican Left Party. While both are separatist parties, they stand on opposite sides of the political spectrum on other issues and many had questioned whether they’d be able to work together.