Friday, July 26, 2019

Spain fails to get a government

Back in April, Spanish voters went to the polls to elect a new parliament. The Socialists emerged as the largest party, with 28.7% of the vote. But despite being the only party with the possibility of forming a government, they have failed to do so:

Spain’s Socialist caretaker prime minister, Pedro Sánchez, has failed at a second attempt to form a government after he could not reach agreement with his only potential coalition partner, the anti-austerity party Unidas Podemos.

Sánchez only needed a simple majority in parliament to get a deal across the line but after 48 hours of hectic negotiating the Podemos leader, Pablo Iglesias, announced his party would abstain during the second round of voting and the result was 124 in Sánchez’s favour, 155 against and 67 abstentions.

The Socialists blame Podemos, for not accepting whatever crumbs they were offered (or better, offering them support for free). But it seems the Socialists weren't that keen on a deal in the first place, rejecting every reduced offer from Podemos. Which really doesn't seem like the basis for a successful coalition. Meanwhile, the Socialists also arrogantly demanded the support of the Catalan parties, while refusing to even discuss independence or the end of repression. Oddly, they didn't get that either.

As for what happens next, they have two more months to try and form a government, otherwise its back to the polls in November.