the Socialist Party comes first but no majority emerges

The Conservatives are back in the second place. Another notable feature is the breakthrough of the far-right Vox party, which totals almost 15% of the vote and comes third.

The Spanish Socialist Party (PSOE) of outgoing Prime Minister Pedro Sanchez took the lead on Sunday, November 10, legislative elections with 28% of the vote and retains roughly the same number of seats in parliament as in the previous election last April , after the counting of 95% of the votes.

The conservatives of the Popular Party (PP) have recovered from the worst result of their history (66 seats in April) and have 88 seats. The far-right party Vox, entered parliament in April with 24 seats, becomes the third force with 52 seats.

The two potential allies of the Socialists are suffering a serious setback. Radical leftist group Podemos loses 7 seats with 10% of the vote, while Ciudadanos centrists collapse with just 7% and 10 seats, 47 fewer than six months ago.

A few weeks after the demonstrations escalated into violence following the conviction in mid-October of nine pro-independence leaders with long prison terms for the secessionist attempt in 2017, Catalonia dominated the campaign.

And Vox, whose leader Santiago Abascal advocates the banning of separatist parties, the suspension of the autonomy of Catalonia and the arrest of its independence president Quim Torra, was the beneficiary. “I always voted PP but considering the situation, I think we must use the strong way” with Catalonia and immigration, another central theme of the Vox campaign, said a sympathizer, Ana Escobedo.

If Vox has benefited from the rejection of Catalan separatists at the national level, the verdict of the polls is quite different in the province: the Catalan separatists could obtain for the first time the majority within the local executive.

For Pedro Sanchez, the task of building a coalition promises to be difficult. His natural allies were punished in the polls, and the voters did not answer his call to give him a clear majority: his parliamentary group came out almost unchanged from this new poll.

Pedro Sanchez does not hide that he prefers to rule alone in the minority rather than trying to get along with Podemos after the failure of their negotiations last summer. He repeats that the other parties should let the one who comes first, by abstaining from the vote of confidence of the chamber.


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