When the protesters stopped them from going to parliament, the politicians ended up arriving in police vans and even by helicopter.
Demonstrators clashed with police outside the Catalan regional parliament, as debate was due to start on a budget aimed at cutting public spending.
President of the Catalan Government, Artur Mas, said “it is intolerable that in a country like ours, they don’t allow us to do our job. We represent the people and we have to arrive in this way while they use violence in the streets against members of parliament.”
Catalonia accounts for about a fifth of Spain’s wealth, but ran a deficit of 3.9 percent of GDP last year.
Like other Spanish regions attempting to heed national calls for austerity, Catalan politicians are hoping to reduce the deficit to 1.3 per cent by the end of this year.