Carmen Calvo Poyato
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Carmen Calvo Poyato

Carmen Calvo
Carmen Calvo 2020 (portrait).jpg
First Deputy Prime Minister of Spain

7 June 2018
MonarchFelipe VI
Pedro Sánchez
Soraya Sáenz de Santamaría
Minister of the Presidency, Relations with the Cortes and Democratic Memory

13 January 2020
Pedro Sánchez
Minister of the Presidency, Relations with the Cortes and Equality

7 June 2018 - 13 January 2020
Pedro Sánchez
Soraya Sáenz de Santamaría
Dolors Montserrat
Minister of Culture

18 April 2004 - 9 July 2007
José Luis Rodríguez Zapatero
Pilar del Castillo
César Antonio Molina
Member of the Congress of Deputies

21 May 2019

1 April 2004 - 27 September 2011
Member of the Parliament of Andalusia

12 March 2000 - 14 March 2004
Personal details
María del Carmen Calvo Poyato

(1957-06-09) June 9, 1957 (age 63)
Cabra, Spain
Political partySpanish Socialist Workers Party
Spouse(s)Manuel Pérez Yruela (divorced)
  • politician
  • author

María del Carmen Calvo Poyato (born 9 June 1957) is a Spanish politician and author serving as Deputy Prime Minister of Spain since June 2018 and Minister of the Presidency, Relations with the Cortes and Equality since January 2020.

Born and raised in Cabra, Spain, she attended the University of Seville and the University of Córdoba; she holds a doctorate in constitutional law from the latter institution. She was Regional Minister of Culture of Andalusia between 1996 and 2004. She also served between 2004 and 2007 as Minister of Culture in the government of José Luis Rodríguez Zapatero. Since June 2017, she has served as Secretary of Equality of the Socialist Party. She has published several books about feminism and gender equality.

Early life and education

Calvo's primary studies were carried out at a Catholic school and her high school studies at the Aguilar and Eslava High School in the province of Córdoba. She studied law at the University of Seville and got her doctorate in constitutional law in the University of Córdoba.[1]

Calvo took a leave of absence from being professor of constitutional law at the University of Córdoba. At the university, she was Secretary General and vice-dean of the Faculty of Law between 1990 and 1994.[2] From 1992 to 1996 she was secretary of the Andalusian Interuniversity Institute of Criminology.[3]

Political career

Calvo entered politics in the 1990s, when she was appointed Counselor of the Economic and Social Council of Córdoba between 1994 and 1996. She joined the Socialist Workers' Party in 1999.[3]

Regional Minister of Culture of Andalusia

In April 1996, Calvo was appointed Minister of Culture of the Regional Government of Andalusia under the presidency of Manuel Chaves. Having being joined the Socialist Workers' Party in 1999, she was elected MP for Córdoba in the Parliament of Andalusia in 2000.[3] She was in office between her appointment in 1996 until her appointment as Culture Minister of the Government of Spain.[2]

During her eight-years-term as Regional Minister of Culture, Calvo inaugurated the Museo Picasso Málaga of contemporary art in 2003, she negotiated the Andalusian Pact for the Book --a pact for supporting and promoting of reading-- and she carried out important investments to reform churches, libraries and theatres --like Maestranza Theatre of Seville-- as well as developing the Quality Plan for the Museums of Andalusia --which included the enlargement of the Archelogic Museum of Córdoba.

In 2004 Calvo debuted in the big screen with director José Luis García Sánchez with a short role in the movie María querida.[4][5]

Minister of Culture

In January 2004, she made the leap to national politics when the Secretary-General of the Socialist Workers' Party, Zapatero, created a "committee of notables" to advise him on his run to the premiership and appointed her a member of that committee.[6] In the Spanish general election in March 2004, she was elected to the Congress of Deputies, representing Córdoba.[7] She was subsequently appointed Minister of Culture in April by the new Prime Minister of Spain, José Luis Rodríguez Zapatero.[8]

As Minister of Culture, Calvo was an outspoken opponent of copyright piracy, and in 2005 her department spent around one million euros on a campaign to educate the public about the importance of intellectual property.[9] However, she was criticised by music industry officials for her statement that intellectual property is "not an absolute right".[10] Her decision to transfer documents from the General Archive of the Spanish Civil War to the Autonomous community of Catalonia was controversial.[11]

Because of the bad results of the previous year in the Spanish cinema, in 2007 Calvo presented a draft law that forces the movie theaters to shown European films (at least a 25%). This was rejected by most of the film industry and they went to strike on June 18, 2007, a strike followed by a 93% of the industry.[12] Minister Calvo was replaced in July 2007 and his successor approved this law with big modifications in late 2007.

She was one of the ministers with worst approval ratings and was replaced in July 2007 by César Antonio Molina.[13]

First Vice President of the Congress

After his cessation as Culture Minister, Calvo was elected First Vice President of the Congress of Deputies and she remained in office until the end of the Congress meeting in January 2008.[14]

In the 2008 general election, Calvo was re-elected MP for Córdoba and was appointed Chairman of the Congress Committee on Equality and member of the Congress Committee on Defence and Committee on Comprehensive Disability Policies. During this Congress meeting she also presides over two subcommittees, one about abortion and other about gender violence.[15]

Calvo rejected to be re-elected in the 2011 general election because of disagreements with the electoral list made for Córdoba and she returned to her teaching position in the university.[16] She became a person of confidence for the Secretary-General of the Socialist Party Pedro Sánchez and he appointed her in 2017 as Secretary for Equality of the Socialist Workers' Party.[17]

Deputy Prime Minister

Deputy PM Calvo presiding a meeting about equality

On June 5, 2018, it was announced that Prime Minister Pedro Sánchez would appoint Calvo as Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of the Presidency, Relations with the Cortes and Equality being this the first time that the Ministry of the Presidency assume also the competencies over equality.[18] She was sworn in before the King at Palace of Zarzuela on 7 June 2018.[19]

During her term, Calvo focused on gender violence especially after a controversial sentence dictated by the Provincial Court of Navarre that condemns a group of mans that raped a 18-years-old woman for sexual abuse --9 years in prison-- and not for sexual assault or rape --that would mean at least 20 years-- and provoking social unrest.[20][21] Calvo proposed a reform of the Criminal Code to include explicit sexual consent.[22][23][24] After appealing the sentence, the High Court of Justice of Navarre confirmed the sentence of the provincial court.[25]

In November 2018, Calvo also proposed to amend to the Constitution to exclude some words that can be considered offensive for disabled people and to create a constitutional mandate that especifically protects disabled women.[26] In October 2019, she was an outspoken proponent of exhuming the remains of Francisco Franco from Valle de los Caídos.[27]

On 13 January 2020 she was sworn in again as Deputy Prime Minister[28][29][30] and Minister of the Presidency in the Sánchez Second Cabinet, losing the Ministry of Equality in favor of Irene Montero.[31]

Personal life

Calvo is the sister of the politician and writer José Calvo Poyato (former MP of the Parliament of Andalusia and former Mayor of Cabra). She married sociologist Manuel Pérez Yruela, former spokesperson of the Regional Government of Andalusia and researcher professor of the Institute of Social Studies of Andalusia. They are currently divorced.[32]

She was married once before, at the age of 19-years-old to her childhood love with whom she had a daughter at the age of 22.[33] She and her daughter share their love for rock music.[34] She has two granddaughters.[33]

She has also declared herself a fan of bullfighting.[35] On 25 March 2020, she tested positive for COVID-19 during the COVID-19 pandemic in Spain.[36][37][38]Público announced that Calvo had recovered from the illness in May 2020.[39]

Awards and honours

  • 1998: Fiambrera de Plata, a prize awarded annually by the Athenaeum of Córdoba.[40]
  • 2007: Grand Cross of the Order of Charles III. It was granted for being a minister.[41]
  • 2008: Favorite Daughter of Cabra, an honorary title given by the City Council of Cabra. She's the first woman to have it.[42]
  • 2017: 2017 Progressive Women Award for her outstanding career as a feminist, as well as for her political and personal involvement in the fight for equality. Award given by the Spanish Federation of Progressive Women.[43]
  • 2018: Ramón Rubial Award for the defense of socialist values.[44][45]


  1. ^ "El primer gobierno de Zapatero - Documentos". Retrieved 2018.
  2. ^ a b País, Ediciones El (14 November 2011). "Carmen Calvo". El País (in Spanish). ISSN 1134-6582. Retrieved 2018.
  3. ^ a b c "Carmen Calvo Poyato - PSOE". Retrieved 2018.
  4. ^ María querida (2004), retrieved 2018
  5. ^ "Carmen Calvo versus Rosa Aguilar: demasiado fuego para el Califato. Noticias de Andalucía". El Confidencial (in Spanish). 1 June 2018. Retrieved 2018.
  6. ^ AGENCIAS (8 January 2004). "Zapatero crea un "comité de notables" para asesorarle en su lucha por La Moncloa". El País (in Spanish). ISSN 1134-6582. Retrieved 2018.
  7. ^ País, Ediciones El (13 March 2004). "Dos ministras del PP y dos consejeras socialistas se enfrentan en las generales". El País (in Spanish). ISSN 1134-6582. Retrieved 2018.
  8. ^ Álvarez, Pilar (12 June 2018). "Deputy PM: "Surrogacy utilizes the bodies of the poorest women"". EL PAÍS. Retrieved 2020.
  9. ^ El Ministerio de Cultura se gasta un millón de euros contra la piratería, Telecinco, 15 December 2005 (in Spanish)
  10. ^ Carmen Calvo advierte que la propiedad intelectual "no es un derecho absoluto" Archived 2007-09-27 at the Wayback Machine, La Vanguardia, 7 July 2006 (in Spanish)
  11. ^ "Carmen Calvo defiende el retorno de los". La Vanguardia. Retrieved 2018.
  12. ^ "El 93% de las salas secunda el paro contra el anteproyecto de la ley del Cine |". Retrieved 2018.
  13. ^ (6 June 2018). "Carmen Calvo vuelve a un Gobierno del PSOE, esta vez como vicepresidenta y ministra de Igualdad -". (in Spanish). Retrieved 2018.
  14. ^ 20Minutos (11 July 2007). "Carmen Calvo, al Congreso". - Últimas Noticias (in Spanish). Retrieved 2018.
  15. ^ Congress of Deputies. "Calvo Poyato, Carmen - 9th Congress of Deputies".
  16. ^ "Carmen Calvo, la política que quiere constitucionalizar la igualdad de género". La Vanguardia. 5 June 2018. Retrieved 2018.
  17. ^ "Sánchez quiere que Carmen Calvo sea secretaria de Igualdad en la Ejecutiva del PSOE". sevilla (in Spanish). 12 June 2017. Retrieved 2018.
  18. ^ "Real Decreto 356/2018, de 6 de junio, por el que se nombra Vicepresidenta del Gobierno a doña María del Carmen Calvo Poyato". Boletín Oficial del Estado (in Spanish). 7 June 2018. Retrieved 2018.
  19. ^ "Los 17 del "Consejo de Ministras y Ministros" de Sánchez prometen ante el Rey". La Vanguardia (in Spanish). 7 June 2018. Retrieved 2019.
  20. ^ Doria, Javier Lorente (5 December 2018). "Spanish court upholds nine-year jail sentence for 'La Manada' gang". El País. ISSN 1134-6582. Retrieved 2018.
  21. ^ "Tens of thousands protest in Spain over gang rape acquittal". France 24. 29 April 2018. Retrieved 2018.
  22. ^ Álvarez, Pilar (10 July 2018). "Spain's deputy PM proposes "yes means yes" law for sexual assault cases". El País. ISSN 1134-6582. Retrieved 2018.
  23. ^ Garza, Frida. "Spain Proposes 'Yes Means Yes' Sexual Consent Law After Gang Rape of Teen". Jezebel. Retrieved 2018.
  24. ^ Badcock, James (23 November 2018). "Outcry as Spanish court says rape not violent". BBC News. Retrieved 2018.
  25. ^ Jones, Sam (5 December 2018). "Spanish 'Wolf Pack' verdict upheld, prompting fresh protests". The Guardian. ISSN 0261-3077. Retrieved 2018.
  26. ^ Sánchez-Morate, Inma (20 November 2018). "Carmen Calvo: "que nadie vuelva a llamar disminuido a una persona con discapacidad"". Cadena SER (in Spanish). Retrieved 2018.
  27. ^ Rolfe, Pamela (14 October 2019). "Spain exhumes dictator Francisco Franco after years of bitter controversy". Washington Post. Retrieved 2020.
  28. ^ "Real Decreto 4/2020, de 12 de enero, por el que se nombra Vicepresidenta Primera del Gobierno a doña María del Carmen Calvo Poyato". Boletín Oficial del Estado (in Spanish). 12 January 2020. Retrieved 2020.
  29. ^ "Toma de posesión de los ministros del Gobierno Sánchez Últimas noticias y reacciones, en directo". La Vanguardia (in Spanish). 13 January 2020. Retrieved 2020.
  30. ^ "Real Decreto 8/2020, de 12 de enero, por el que se nombran Ministros del Gobierno". Boletín Oficial del Estado (in Spanish). 12 January 2020. Retrieved 2020.
  31. ^ "Carmen Calvo, vicepresidenta primera, la abanderada feminista heredera de los Omeyas". El Mundo (in Spanish). 10 January 2020. Retrieved 2020.
  32. ^ 20Minutos (8 July 2007). "Carmen Calvo tiene planes de boda con su ex guardaespaldas". - Últimas Noticias (in Spanish). Retrieved 2018.
  33. ^ a b "Carmen Calvo: "Soy feminista desde que tengo uso de razón"". ELMUNDO (in Spanish). 10 November 2018. Retrieved 2018.
  34. ^ "Vida nueva para Carmen Calvo". La Vanguardia. 11 July 2007. Retrieved 2018.
  35. ^ "Carmen Calvo: "No tengo que pedir permiso ni perdón porque me gusten los toros" | Toros |". Retrieved 2018.
  36. ^ "Spain's Deputy PM Carmen Calvo tests positive for coronavirus". Reuters. 25 March 2020. Retrieved 2020.
  37. ^ Shields, Bevan (26 March 2020). "A massive disaster is unfolding in Spain". The Sydney Morning Herald. Retrieved 2020.
  38. ^ Sills, Ben; Millan Lombrana, Laura (26 March 2020). "Spanish Doctors Are Forced to Choose Who to Let Die". Bloomberg. Retrieved 2020.
  39. ^ "Álvarez de Toledo pide la dimisión de Carmen Calvo: "Su negligencia se cuenta en millones de vidas rotas"". Retrieved 2020.
  40. ^ "Fiambreras de Plata Año 1998 - Ateneo de Córdoba". Retrieved 2018.
  41. ^ "Royal Decree 1078/2007, of July 27, which grants the Grand Cross of the Royal and Distinguished Spanish Order of Carlos III to Mrs. Carmen Calvo Poyato". Retrieved 2018.
  42. ^ Diario de Córdoba. "Carmen Calvo recibe el título de Hija Predilecta de Cabra". Diario Córdoba (in Spanish). Retrieved 2018.
  43. ^ Tribuna Feminista. "Premios Mujeres Progresistas 2017 Tribuna Feminista". Archived from the original on 22 June 2018.
  44. ^ "Calvo afirma que la Constitución". La Vanguardia. 1 December 2018. Retrieved 2018.
  45. ^ "PSE EUSKADI: Agenda: XII EDICIÓN PREMIOS RAMÓN RUBIAL". Retrieved 2018.

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