And now this? The polls turn Congress into a labyrinth


Congress left the polls this sunday and which will take place on August 17 It would be the closest thing to a political maze. The two rights together do not reach an absolute majority, and the possibility of supplementing it with other synergies can be completely excluded due to Vox’s incompatibility with national formations. The bloc that has supported the government of Pedro Sanchez in these past four years does not reach 176 seats either. For the Socialists and Sumar to re-form the coalition government They will need some sort of understanding with the Junts, forming Carles Puigdemont, who has been active in the last legislature, unlike the ERC, in front opposition to the executive.

Since the bipartisanship imploded in 2015, forming a parliamentary majority has been an enigma. Eight years later, although the concentration of votes in the two major powers has recovered – between the two powers they added nearly 15 points more than in the previous election – the maze of Congress has become more complicated and it is very difficult to guess what the exit could be. With the current distribution of forces, the left will have another option to get the government. The one on the right seems impossible, as long as the formula also includes Vox. The only possibility is that, to save the bloc and prevent a new electoral repeat as in 2016 and 2019, the SWP will agree to some kind of state agreement to allow the People’s Party to assert its status as the most voting force. We discuss below some options with varying odds.

What does the left need to keep the government?. The Catalan independence movement was hit hard in the elections. The representation of the 23 MPs it had gathered four years earlier between the ERC, Junts and CUP was drastically reduced to 14. The ERC lost six; The CUP, who had two seats, disappears and Junts holds the best, but even so, he gave up one of the eight seats he won in Congress. Despite this major setback, the independence movement once again occupies a central position before the politics of alliances. And this time not only ERC is important, but also a more complex virtual partner, the Puigdemont party.

The parties I have supported in the past four years, with interruptions and depending on the moment, the coalition government has 172 seats: PSOE (122), SOMMAR (31), ERC (7), EH Bildu (6), PNV (5) and BNG (1). To achieve an inauguration, an absolute majority (176) in the first vote or a simple vote (more than no) in the second vote is required. Sanchez reached it four years ago with formula two, by just two votes and thanks to abstentions by ERC and EH Bildu. This time, it will require that these two formations give her their affirmative vote, which does not seem unreasonable given how the legislature has developed, and at least an abstention from Jontz. The latter certainly seems problematic.

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In the past four years, Jontes has fought in opposition to the Sanchez government with as much perseverance and force as the national right-wing parties. Junts voted against almost all relevant issues, including all state budgets. If the agreements with ERC and EH Bildu have already cost Sanchez, the possible understanding with the party of the ex-president of Generalitat, a fugitive from justice in Belgium, will once again raise all the noise of the right. Junts’ spokeswoman in Congress during the last legislative session, Miriam Nogueiras, predicted after learning the results: “We will not make Sanchez president for nothing.”

Impossible on the right. PP and Vox each have 169 seats and have one confirmed seat that they can combine, that of Unión del Pueblo Navarro. As a hypothesis, it is also possible to consider the sum of the only Canary coalition, which governs the archipelago with the People’s Party, although it has always been opposed to agreements with the far right. But without the PNP’s support – which is unbelievable at the moment – the combination of forces will not be enough to boost Alberto Núñez Figo.

Basque nationalists have never ruled out agreements with the People’s Party, as they have throughout history. But they have also declared, actively and passively, that they will never enter into any formula that has to rely on the help of the far right. Additionally, abstaining on PNV would not be enough, it would be necessary for her to give her votes in favor of such a hypothesis to thrive. The uphill battle that Lehendakari Iñigo Urkullu’s Basque party is fighting with EH Bildu ahead of regional elections next year reinforces the impression that the PNP’s refusal to get involved in something where Vox is final is final. PSOE was the first party on Sunday in the Basque Country, while Urkullu managed to maintain national primacy after a very difficult battle with the left. apertzal. PNV won by only a few tenths, but lost a seat and tied by five with EH Bildu, who also added another MP for Navarra.

Agreement with PSOE. Figo has declared it both actively and passively on the campaign trail, and he reiterated it vehemently in his speech on election night on the balcony of the party’s national headquarters: he demands that the SPD pave the way for the government by emphasizing its condition as first force. That possibility also seems remote, at least for the time being. Sanchez also repeatedly denied this in the campaign, realizing that PP was asking him to support for nothing for a project that was submitted expressly for the purpose of “abolishing sanchismo”. On the other hand, the Popular Party no longer respects the primacy of the first power, in this case the socialists, and in important cities such as Valladolid or Elche. Of course, if the blockade continues and the possibility of a repeat election begins to take shape, some unexpected aberration may arise today.

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