Spain off to the polls again
After last-ditch talks between Spain’s king and party leaders failed to break the country’s political deadlock, Spaniards are to go to the polls once more.
An election on 26 June will be confirmed when parliament is dissolved next Tuesday.
But it is far from clear that the same politicians who have failed to work together in the past four months will manage to do so in July.
Little is likely to change from December’s general election result, according to opinion polls which also indicate that 80% of Spaniards want a coalition government, and not fresh elections.
More frustration could ensue in a country where unemployment remains over 20%.
The acting economy minister has admitted that Spain’s economic recovery will falter this year, scaling back his prediction for GDP growth to 2.7% from 3%.
In the 20 December ballot, the conservative Popular Party (PP) of acting Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy came first, but lost its majority on the back of austerity policies and corruption scandals to win 122 seats out of the 350 in Congress.
The Socialist party (PSOE) led by Pedro Sanchez was second but immediately ruled out a grand coalition deal with Mr Rajoy.
Podemos, a Left-wing anti-austerity party was third, but could not combine with PSOE to guarantee a majority, while centrist anti-corruption party Ciudadanos did not win enough seats to really help anyone.
It was somewhat puzzling then, when the only formal negotiation process to produce any kind of firm deal in the past four months was between the Socialists and Ciudadanos.
No one else backed the 200-point policy programme aimed at cleaning up Spain’s sleazy politics and tackling some of the social problems caused by a double-dip recession between 2008 and 2013.
Instead there has been finger-pointing as political leaders prepare sheepishly to ask Spaniards for their vote once again.
As the leaders prepare to get back on the campaign trail, all opinion polls agree that the PP will win again, but fall short of a majority, again.
“After last-ditch talks between Spain’s king and party leaders failed to break the country’s political deadlock, Spaniards are to go to the polls once more.”
the king is political?
how much will podemos rise?
“More frustration could ensue in a country where unemployment remains over 20%.”