Vox leader Santiago Abascal blamed the People’s Party candidate, Alberto Núñez Fijo, for the “failure of the Alternative”, the two-party coalition government he was looking to build. Sarcastically, Abascal Figo was congratulated Not only because he won the election, but also because he would not depend on his party to get to La Moncloa, “as he also wanted”, and wondered if the now PPP president would continue with his offer to the PSOE to abstain and let him govern.
In attendance without questions at his party headquarters, surrounded by Vox chiefs, Abascal has attributed the fiasco to the “layoffs” of right-wing voters, caused by the “whitewashing” of the socialist government that Núñez Viejo would have caused with his presentations of pacts to the PSOE, and his decision not to attend the four-person debate on TVE or the distribution of ministries before winning the election. He also accused the media of “demonizing his party” and “manipulating opinion polls” and said that the right-wing press, with its calls for an advantageous vote, had “successfully thwarted the alternative”. Although he acknowledged that in this Vox campaign he was not harassed by him, he claimed he suffered “further manipulation”. In any case, he said he was ready for “opposition and repeat elections” and warned that Pedro Sánchez could block the inauguration or even re-election of a new president with more weight than the votes of “communists, separatists and terrorists”.
What he by no means did was self-criticize, despite the fact that Vox lost 19 seats, 36% of those it had. The decline was particularly resounding in Castilla y León, a community where the Ultra Party has been ruling since April 2022 in coalition with the People’s Party, where it lost five of its six deputies, going from 16.8 to 13.7% of the vote, far below the 17.6% it achieved in regional elections. The blow was particularly hard because Vox had always set the Castilian-Leonian government as a model for the rest of Spain and its vice-president, Juan García Gallardo, played a particularly active part in this campaign.
Fox also lost three seats in Andalusia, two in Madrid, the Community of Valencia and Castilla-La Mancha or one seat in Murcia, the Balearic Islands, the Canary Islands, Ceuta and Extremadura. In Catalonia, he keeps his two seats, but is no longer the dominant force of the Spanish right, with the People’s Party doubling and tripling its number of seats. It also lost the first place it had in Murcia and Ceuta in the general elections of 2019 and was defeated by the People’s Party in Almería, unlike what happened four years ago. His consolation is that he is still the third political force, two seats ahead of Sumar.
But the most painful thing is to verify that Vox will not be “decisive”, as Abascal claimed, since Its 33 deputies do not work to complete the absolute majority with 136 deputies of Parliament, Therefore, the sum of both is not enough to construct the “alternative” to the left-wing government that the radical leader was offering Feijóo throughout the campaign without getting him to take up the challenge. Vox had already assumed it would not re-certify the 52 MPs it secured in the last general election, as indicated by its polls in recent weeks, despite still rallying more than other parties, but it did not expect such a strong fall, let alone become irrelevant. By not reaching fifty deputies, Abascal would not even have the tool of filing an appeal before the Constitutional Court alone, which he had used so profusely in the previous legislature.
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After his brief appearance before the press, Abascal rose to the stage to address just over a hundred followers gathered on the street where Vox is headquartered, before whom he admitted to “concern” about the outcome of the election and to whom he told, more pointedly than before the dam, that “it is very likely that there will be a repeat of the election.” “Let no one have the slightest doubt that we will resist,” he declared.
In the morning, when he went to vote, Abascal had applied the bandage before the injury, assuring that “any result Fox gets in these circumstances will be a heroic result.” Despite the fact that Vox had participated in the same televised debates as the other parties, with the exception of PP and PSOE, whose candidates, Pedro Sánchez and Alberto Núñez Feijóo, had a head-to-head on Antena 3; and that Abascal refused to be interviewed by several media outlets (including those of the PRISA group, EL PAÍS editor), and asserted that his party had “everything against it, opposition from the majority of the media and political opponents grounded in lies, demonization and distortion of the Vox message”.
Abascal watched the counting of votes from the top floor of the headquarters, flanked by his closest aides. The only person who showed his face in these long hours was the General Secretary, Ignacio Garriga, who, shortly after the polls closed, made some brief statements in which he did not want to comment on the estimates given by the polls and stressed Vox’s willingness to “impose” their vote “without conceding it” to the People’s Party. At that time, he still didn’t know that the value of those votes, since they were insufficient, would decrease throughout the night.
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