Felipe: King almost without fault or blame

Felipe: King almost without fault or blame
Felipe: King almost without fault or blame

Juan Carlos (86), wife Sofia (85)

When Felipe ascended to the Spanish throne on June 19, 2014, he inherited a difficult legacy. The reputation of the monarchy was badly damaged, which was mainly due to his father Juan Carlos. There were rumors about the then 76-year-old’s alleged infidelities. When pictures of an elephant hunt in which the king had taken part became public while the country was suffering from the financial crisis, the people were very angry. With his abdication in 2014, Juan Carlos finally drew the consequences and cleared the way for his son.

It was the profound fall of the man who was celebrated for years as the savior of Spanish democracy because he persuaded putschists to give up with a resolute speech to the nation in 1981.

No salary for the old king

After the change of throne, the relationship between father and son did not improve due to further explosive revelations. When his own name also appeared in connection with a multi-million dollar financial scandal in 2020, the Bourbon king lost his temper: he publicly broke with his then 82-year-old father and also cut Juan Carlos’ salary as former king – most recently this was around 194,000 euros annually from the Casa Real’s household budget.

Even though a recent exposé book claimed that Felipe and Letizia had long been having extramarital affairs and that the marriage only existed on paper, the calls for the abolition of the monarchy in Spain are much less vehement than in 2014. According to surveys, society in Spain is divided into two roughly equal camps: one wants to keep the hereditary monarchy, the other wants to abolish it.

If the monarchy survives, Leonor, Felipe’s eldest daughter, will one day succeed her. She would be the first Spanish queen since Isabella II, who reigned until 1868.

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Source: Nachrichten

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