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Angel Hristov November 23, 2023 2 min read
Anti-Gambling Advocate Garzón Exits Spanish Politics
Bustinduy will succeed Garzón but his stance on gambling is not yet clear
The ongoing reshuffling in Spanish politics may be good news for the gambling industry as the Minister of Consumer Affairs, Alberto Garzón, has stepped down. However, the industry shouldn’t get excited yet as his successor’s stance on gambling is still vague.
Garzón is a vocal anti-gambling activist who has been an active promoter of regulations that limit the industry’s reach. He is also the name behind the crackdown on gambling ads which implemented a number of measures to restrict gambling advertisements. This included the imposing of limits on when gambling companies can advertise, as well as a prohibition of gambling logos on professional athletes’ jerseys.
The controversial policies are currently being reviewed by the Supreme Court as some questioned their constitutionality.
In addition, Garzón promoted restrictions on online gambling deposits and loot boxes in video games. While he couldn’t pass either of these measures, they are not completely off the table either.
Garzón exited politics on Friday. In his final speech, he praised the Ministry of Consumer Affairs’ efforts in promoting safer and healthier online gambling.
Garzón Will Be Succeeded by Pablo Bustinduy
In the meantime, Pablo Bustinduy will step in as the new Minister of Social Rights, Consumption and Agenda 2030, a new position set to replace the Minister of Consumer Affairs. Bustinduy’s stance on gambling is not yet clear.
In a recent statement, Bustinduy promised to expand social rights and defend a sustainable democracy. However, Bustinduy has also previously made favorable comments on the Cuban dictator Fidel Castro and is considered a communist by some Spanish journalists.
His alleged anti-capitalist sentiments may mean more trouble for gambling companies, although there is no clear indication of that as of yet.
The appointee boasts a degree in Political Sciences and Administration, a master’s degree in History and Political Thought and a doctorate in Philosophy. Bustinduy’s mother, Ángeles Amador Millán, previously served as the Minister of Health and Consumer Affairs.
After a period outside the political sector, the newly-appointed Minister of Social Rights, Consumption and Agenda 2030 returned to politics as a member of Sumar, a left-wing to far-left electoral platform.