If the demographic consensus does not collapse into a Portuguese-style outcome (in which the declared tie between right and left becomes an absolute majority for the socialist Antonio Costa), the elections in J 23 will result in a victory for the bloc made up of PP and Vox. At least that’s what the vast majority of opinion polls expect. In fact, some predictions are very much anticipated after Ciudadanos’ disappearance.
If, for example, the Populars (with 16.7% of the vote) and the Cs (with 15.9%) in the April 2019 elections had undergone the same abbreviation, the outcome would have been very different: the centre-right would have added nearly 33% of the vote and 139 seats. And even if the left had won the same votes, it would have taken 11 fewer seats. In other words, the PP-Ciudadanos merger will be the winner of the elections and will collect, along with Vox, eight more seats than the left (and in all, 15 more than it already received).
Of course, the conservative bloc was very far (14 deputies) from the absolute majority in power. Could the same thing happen in the 23J elections? Most polls say no and that the People’s Party and Fox will be above the magic barrier of 176 MPs. However, previous elections that provided an outright majority for the conservative space (which in Spain ranges from the center-right to the far-right) provide extrapolations that oscillate between an insufficient majority and a landslide victory.
The result of 2019 has already given 33% of the vote and 140 seats to the People’s Party, having retained the vote that went to the Cs.
In this sense, the 1977 elections, which are the first of the current parliamentary democracy, handed over 180 deputies to the conservative forces, with a total number of votes of 45.3%. As for the left, although it added eight-tenths less, it still collected 144 deputies. The contrast in showing this correlation with the current scenario is that the score in seats can be very different: less than 170 for the right and 154 for the left. explanation? In 1977 and 1979 the Socialist Socialist Party concentrated its votes in the most urban areas of Spain, while deep in Spain the right was very strong.
Proof of this is that in the various provinces of Castile and Galicia, the CDU and Alianza Popular took all the seats, and the left did not get representation. And while Vox’s impeachment has boosted the conservative vote in rural Spain, it doesn’t look like it can reach the levels of nearly 50 years ago. Indeed, in the 1979 elections, although fewer votes were added from the Socialists and Communists, the right retained an absolute majority and the left repeated the same number of seats.
The relationship between 1977 and 1979, when the CDU and AP had an absolute majority with the same votes as the left, is now unrepeatable
Instead, today the 1979 affair left a sort of technical tie around the 160-seat between PP and Vox on the one hand, and PSOE and Sumar on the other. To reach an absolute majority now, the conservative bloc must repeat at least the 2000 link, when it collected 45% of the vote and got nearly five points to the left (which translated into an absolute majority of 183 deputies). Even under this assumption – which would lead Popular to 34% of the vote and Fox to 11% – the conservative majority would be very narrow in the current scenario.
Celebs and Ultras need at least five points of margin over PSOE and Sumar to collect 176 seats
Only a right-over-left advantage equal to or greater than five points would generate a clear majority from the conservative bloc. 12 years ago, PP (186), UPyD (5) and FA (1) combined more than 190 seats and nearly 50% of the vote (13 points more than left). And a similar account would now harvest PP and Vox if they reproduced the feature. But the final scenario will depend, as always, on packing each block.