José Javier Esparza Abaurrea (born 20 July 1970) is a Spanish politician of the Navarrese People's Union (UPN). He has been president of his party since 2015, the same year that he entered the Parliament of Navarre.
Born in Pamplona, Esparza graduated in Pedagogy from the University of Navarra and has a master's degree in Public Management from the Public University of Navarre. He began teaching in a primary school in 1996.
From 1999 to 2007, Esparza was mayor of Agoitz. For the next four years, he was the managing director of the Navarrese Institute of Sport, then of the Navarrese Employment Service. In June 2012, he was named Minsiter of Rural Development, Environment and Local Administration in the Government of Navarre.
Esparza became a member of the Navarrese People's Union (UPN) executive committee in 2013. In November 2014, he received 61% of the votes to lead the party in the 2015 Navarrese regional election. In those elections, his party was the most voted but lost four seats, losing power for the first time in 19 years.
In September 2015, Esparza was elected UPN president with 57% of the votes. He led the Navarra Suma coalition with the People's Party of Navarre and Citizens in the 2019 Navarrese regional election, coming first with 20 seats – three more than the sum of its parts four years earlier – but again did not form government.
In June 2020, Esparza survived a leadership challenge from the UPN's leader in the Congress of Deputies, Sergio Sayas (58.2% to 41.8%). In February 2022, he expelled Sayas and the party's only other congressman Carlos García Adanero from the party for disobeying orders and voting against labour reform.
- "José Javier Esparza anuncia que será candidato a liderar la lista de UPN en las próximas elecciones forales" [José Javier Esparza announces that he will be the candidate to lead the UPN list in the next regional elections] (in Spanish). Noticias de Navarra. 17 November 2014. Archived from the original on 28 September 2015. Retrieved 18 March 2022.
- "José Javier Esparza encabezará la lista de UPN en las próximas elecciones forales" [José Javier Esparza will lead the UPN's list in the next regional elections]. ABC (in Spanish). 30 November 2014. Archived from the original on 5 March 2016. Retrieved 18 March 2022.
- "UPN gana en Navarra pero tendrá difícil la gobernabilidad" [UPN wins in Navarre but will find it difficult to govern] (in Spanish). La Sexta. 25 May 2015. Archived from the original on 18 March 2022. Retrieved 18 March 2022.
- "Uxue Barkos será la nueva presidenta de Navarra" [Uxue Barkos will be the new president of Navarre]. ABC (in Spanish). 2 June 2015. Archived from the original on 2 June 2015. Retrieved 18 March 2022.
- Unzué, Michelle (28 September 2015). "El parlamentario Javier Esparza, elegido nuevo presidente de UPN". Diario de Navarra (in Spanish). Archived from the original on 13 June 2021. Retrieved 18 March 2022.
- Izarra, Josean (29 May 2019). "El recuento final da otro diputado a Navarra Suma y consolida a Javier Esparza como futuro presidente" [Final recount gives Navarra Suma another deputy and consolidates Javier Esparza as future president]. El Mundo (in Spanish). Archived from the original on 24 January 2021. Retrieved 18 March 2022.
- "Chivite es investida presidenta de Navarra en segunda votación" [Chivite is invested as president of Navarre in second vote] (in Spanish). EITB. 2 August 2019. Archived from the original on 21 August 2020. Retrieved 18 March 2022.
- Barcos, Jesús; Beroiz, Unai (29 June 2020). "Esparza seguirá presidiendo UPN pero el voto a Sayas deja un aviso interno" [Esparza continues as president of UPN but vote for Sayas leaves an internal warning] (in Spanish). Noticias de Navarra. Archived from the original on 30 November 2020. Retrieved 18 March 2022.
- Arnedo, Beatriz (2 March 2022). "Adanero y Sayas, expulsados de UPN dos años y medio" [Adanero and Sayas, expelled from the UPN for two-and-a-half years]. Diario de Navarra (in Spanish). Archived from the original on 17 March 2022. Retrieved 17 March 2022.