Spain: The announced failure of the inauguration of the leader of the right
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Spain: The announced failure of the inauguration of the leader of the right

If confirmed, as expected, the setback will pave the way for the candidacy of outgoing Socialist Prime Minister Pedro Sánchez, who is confident he can win substantial support from Catalan separatists who are demanding an amnesty measure in exchange for dividing public opinion.

Tasked by King Felipe VI with forming a government, Mr. Feijóo, 62, will take the floor of the House of Representatives at 12:00 (10:00 GMT) to present the program he will put to a vote of parliamentarians on Wednesday.

In order to be invested in this vote, the leader of the People’s Party (PP) must get a majority of 176 deputies out of 350. However, he can only count on 172 votes, mainly thanks to the support of the far-right Vox, a figure that scared other formations.

A second vote, where a simple majority is sufficient, will take place on Friday. But, barring a turnaround, the conservative won’t be able to win either.

Conscious of the lack of support, Mr Feijóo has for weeks been attacking the ongoing talks between his Socialist rival and the Catalan independence party of Carles Puigdemont, the leader of the 2017 secession attempt.

The latter, who fled to Belgium in 2017 to avoid trial, is seeking amnesty for separatists persecuted by the Spanish justice system in exchange for key support from his party’s lawmakers.

Waving Spanish flags, around 40,000 PP activists, according to the prefecture, condemned the demand by Catalan separatists in central Madrid on Sunday.

Surrounded by two former heads of government of the PP, José María Aznar (1996-2004) and Mariano Rajo (2011-2018), Alberto Núñez Feijóo repeated to his supporters his refusal to “blackmail” the separatists “even if it costs me my life. the presidency” .

The failure Mr. Feijóo announced in Wednesday’s first vote will trigger a two-month countdown before new parliamentary elections are called.

During these two months, Mr. Sánchez – who defied all polls giving him a clear loss during the July 23 parliamentary elections – will in turn try to win the confidence of Parliament to return to power.

The exercise is also very dangerous for the prime minister who has to find an amnesty formula that will satisfy the separatists without causing a revolt within his own party, where the idea has angered certain barons.

In this context, the PP has been trying for several days to open a breakthrough within the Socialist Party by calling on the MPs of this formation who oppose the amnesty to reconsider their attitude towards the investment of Feijóo.

On Sunday, Sánchez declared the call for “defection” as “the worst corruption”. The socialist, who has proven his great ability to survive politically in recent years, is showing his optimism about his ability to return to power with the support of the far left and the Basque and Catalan parties.

The PP is “demonstrating against the socialist government,” he said during the meeting, on the occasion of Sunday’s rally in Madrid, “but I’m sorry, there will be a socialist government” that will soon be installed by the parliament.

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