General Election in Spain: One country moves to the right


Spain has elected a new parliament – for the second time this year. The Socialists win again but can not easily form a government. The real winner is another party.

By Oliver Neuroth, ARD Studio Madrid

An otherwise inconspicuous place in the north of Madrid is full of people this evening. They call "presidente" towards the stage. There is not about the politician who has taken on this election day, the most votes and head of government – but the boss of the ultra-right party Vox.

It comes to 15 percent and has more than doubled the number of seats in parliament. The crowd celebrates Vox boss Santiago Abascal, their "president". He is not yet the president, says Abascal. But something like the secret winner of the election: "Eleven months ago, we were almost unrepresented, with four or five councilors dispersed in tiny villages – no seats in regional parliaments or the European Parliament – today we are the third strongest force in Spain 52 deputies! "

"Long live Spain", a Vox motto. The party wants to keep the country together and has won strong votes from the crisis in Catalonia. Vox wants to act with full force against the independence movement and would like to ban all separatist movements. Behind it is also vox voter Diego. "I'm proud to be a Spaniard, this party represents me as a Spaniard, that separatist parties have taken seats in parliament in this election is outrageous," he says.

Irritant topic Catalonia

The Catalonia theme shaped this election campaign like no other. Prime Minister Sanchez of the Socialists has failed to position himself in such a way that he could win votes. On the contrary, Sanchez's party easily loses approval in this election, reaching 28 percent, which corresponds to 120 parliamentary seats, three less than before.

But the socialist party remains the strongest force, Sanchez sees himself as the future prime minister. How he wants to govern, however, remains unclear in the evening. For he is far from the absolute majority. And alliance of left-wing parties is not getting enough seats in parliament. "I want to call on all parties to be responsible to solve the political blockade in Spain," said Sanchez before his supporters.

This could mean that even conservative forces should help Sanchez to come into office. From a purely mathematical point of view, a grand coalition would be possible, based on the German model. But the conservative People's Party and the Socialists had ruled out such an alliance before the election.

Weak government

Another option: The People's Party abstains in the decisive vote in Parliament, which could make Sanchez prime minister. Then he would again be at the head of a minority government – exactly what the socialist had wanted.

Political scientist Lluis Orriols of the University of Madrid Carlos III. But there is a problem: "It is the one thing to be elected prime minister – the other is to form a stable government, a government that has no majority in parliament, can not adopt a budget, is weak. soon again a new election.

The leader of the conservative People's Party, Pablo Casado, said in the evening that his party would act responsibly. Spain should no longer be blocked. At the same time, however, Casado said that his party was "incompatible" with Sanchez's. Spain may again face complicated talks about forming a government. They should go already today.

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