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Spain's acting prime minister, Mariano Rajoy, after meeting with King Felipe IV, Madrid, April 26, 2016 (AP photo by Francisco Seco).

Will Spain’s New Election Bring Political Stability—or Just Uncertainty?

Tuesday, May 10, 2016

In late April, Spain’s King Felipe announced that new elections would be held June 26, six months after Spaniards went to the polls. No party won a majority in December’s elections, however, and months of negotiations failed to produce a viable ruling coalition.

The incumbent, conservative People’s Party (PP), led by Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy, won the most votes—nearly 29 percent—but lost its governing majority and over one-third of its deputies in the 350-seat Congress of Deputies. The social-democratic Spanish Socialist Workers’ Party (PSOE) took 22 percent of the vote, followed by the upstart left-wing Podemos with 21 percent. Another newly formed party, the right-leaning Ciudadanos, won 14 percent of the vote. No party was willing to make the necessary concessions in subsequent negotiations to form a coalition government. ...

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