José Calvo Sotelo

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This name uses Spanish naming customs: the first or paternal family name is Calvo and the second or maternal family name is Sotelo.
José Calvo Sotelo
The Duke of Calvo Sotelo
José Calvo Sotelo.JPG
Calvo Sotelo over 1930's
Minister of Finance
In office
3 December 1925 – 21 January 1930
Leader Miguel Primo de Rivera
Preceded by José Corral Larre
Succeeded by Francisco Moreno Zuleta
Member of the Congress of Deputies
In office
9 June 1919 – 2 October 1920
Constituency Orense
In office
9 July 1931 – 7 December 1932
Constituency Orense
In office
4 May 1934 – 22 May 1934
Constituency La Coruña
In office
5 December 1933 – 7 January 1936
Constituency Orense
In office
25 February 1936 – 13 July 1936
Constituency Orense
Personal details
Born José Calvo Sotelo
6 May 1893
Tui, Galicia, Spain
Died 13 July 1936(1936-07-13) (aged 43)
Madrid, Spain
Resting place Almudena cemetery
Nationality Spanish
Political party Renovación Española
Other political
Spouse(s) Enriqueta Grondona
Relations Leopoldo Calvo Sotelo (brother)
Leopoldo Calvo-Sotelo y Bustelo (nephew)
Occupation Economist, jurist
Religion Roman Catholicism

José Calvo Sotelo, 1st Duke of Calvo Sotelo (6 May 1893 – 13 July 1936) was a Spanish politician prior to and during the Second Spanish Republic. His murder by a unit of the urban police force known as the Assault Guard and several socialist (PSOE/UGT) activists (including the bodyguard of Indalecio Prieto), just the day after a harsh confrontation in Parliament with Spanish Socialist Workers' Party (PSOE) and Communist Party of Spain (PCE) ministers of the Popular Front, aroused strong suspicions of a government involvement in the crime and contributed greatly to precipitate the Spanish Civil War, which was being prepared since February, the month of the electoral triumph of the Popular Front.


Calvo Sotelo was born in Tui, Galicia to his parents Pedro Calvo y Camina and Elisa Sotelo Lafuente.

An economist and jurist, he was secretary of the Academy of Moral and Political Sciences of the Ateneo Mercantil de Madrid and a university professor of the Universidad Central. He was a member of Antonio Maura Montaner's Conservative Party. He first served as an administrative officer in the Ministry of Grace and Justice. In 1919, he was chosen as a deputy to the Cortes for the district of O Carballiño, in Ourense, and in 1922 he was made civil governor of Valencia.

When Miguel Primo de Rivera became dictator of Spain in 1924 he appointed Calvo Sotelo as finance minister in 1925. As such he performed a successful redressment of the Spanish economy and industry.

Calvo Sotelo was later forced into exile when the Republic was proclaimed (1931), but returned to Spain when he was amnestied in May 1934, becoming then a deputy for Renovación Española. He soon became one of the most important right-wing political figures in the country. Calvo Sotelo unsuccessfully attempted to gain control of the Falange Española from José Antonio Primo de Rivera in 1935. Calvo Sotelo was harshly critical of the Republican government after the electoral victory of the leftist Popular Front in February 1936. He was the Leader of the Opposition at the time of his assassination.

In the first hours of 13 July 1936, members of the Assault Guards, Juventudes Socialistas Unificadas, PSOE, Unión General de Trabajadores (UGT) and the captain of Civil Guard Fernando Condés, went to Calvo Sotelo's house, took him in front of his wife and children, showing a fake arrest warrant, and minutes later killed him with gunshots in a police truck. His body was later dropped at the entrance of one of the city's cemeteries. According to all later investigations, the perpetrator of the murder was a socialist gunman, Luis Cuenca, who was known as the bodyguard of PSOE leader Indalecio Prieto.

In the days following, the Spanish Government undertook a routine investigation that never reached any conclusion. This only accelerated the preparations for a military revolt that was being developed since the electoral triumph of the Popular Front in the month of February. These preparations led to the uprising of the Army of Africa in Melilla on 17 July 1936 that, under the assumed command of Generals Emilio Mola, Francisco Franco, Gonzalo Queipo de Llano and José Sanjurjo, marked the beginning of the Spanish Civil War.



Spanish nobility
New title Duke of Calvo Sotelo
Succeeded by
José Calvo Sotelo Grondona