Spain’s Right-Wing Leader Inauguration Announcement Fails

If it is confirmed, as expected, this failure will open the way for a candidacy of the outgoing socialist Prime Minister Pedro Sánchez, convinced for his part of being able to obtain the essential support of the Catalan separatists who are demanding in exchange an amnesty measure dividing the public opinion.

Charged by King Felipe VI with forming a government, Mr. Feijóo, 62, will take the podium of the Chamber of Deputies at 12:00 p.m. (10:00 GMT) to present the program which he will submit to the vote of parliamentarians on Wednesday.

To be invested in this vote, the leader of the Popular Party (PP) must obtain 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 of Vox which is scarecrow figure for other formations.

A second vote, where a simple majority is sufficient, will take place on Friday September 29. But, barring a twist, the conservative will not be able to win either.


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

The latter, who fled to Belgium in 2017 to escape legal proceedings, demands amnesty for separatists pursued by the Spanish justice system in exchange for the crucial support of deputies from his party.

Waving Spanish flags, around 40,000 PP activists, according to the prefecture, denounced this demand from the Catalan separatists on Sunday in the center of Madrid.

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

Sánchez in ambush

Mr. Feijóo’s announced setback in Wednesday’s first vote will launch a two-month countdown before the convening of new legislative elections.

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

An exercise also highly perilous for the Prime Minister who must find an amnesty formula that will satisfy the separatists without triggering a revolt within his own party, where this idea has sparked an outcry from certain barons.

In this context, the PP has been trying for several days to open a breach within the Socialist Party by calling on the deputies of this formation opposed to the amnesty to reconsider their position vis-à-vis the investiture of Feijóo.

A call for “defection” denounced on Sunday by Mr. Sánchez as “the worst corruption”.

The socialist, who has proven in recent years his great ability to survive politically, displays his optimism about his ability to be returned to power with the support of the far left and the Basque and Catalan parties.

The PP “demonstrates against a socialist government”, he said, during a meeting, in reference to the rally on Sunday September 24 in Madrid, “but I’m sorry, there will be a socialist government” invested soon by the parliament.

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