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Spain's Socialists Reject Rajoy's Attempt at Grand Coalition

Ciaran Giles Monday, June 27, 2016

MADRID (AP) — Spain's center-left Socialist party has rejected acting Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy's proposal to form a "grand coalition" with his conservative Popular Party.

The Popular Party won 137 seats in Sunday's unprecedented repeat vote, which was still short of the majority in the 350-seat Parliament that it enjoyed after the 2011 election.

Rajoy's party also won the December election but no other major party was willing to help him form a government — a scenario that could happen again.

The party's leadership was meeting Monday to review its options. Prior to that, Rajoy, 61, told Cope radio he would again push for a "grand coalition" with the Socialists, who placed second on Sunday, winning 85 seats in their worst-ever result.

But Socialist party spokesman Antonio Hernando said, "We are not going to support Rajoy's investiture nor abstain."

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