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Smaller parties likely to gain in Spain election

Smaller parties likely to gain in Spain election
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The first full day of campaigning for elections in Spain began on Friday with good news for the opposition conservative Popular Party.

A new poll suggested they will win over 46 percent of the vote or 195 of the 350 seats in the lower house of parliament.

The same poll showed the ruling Socialists suffering a crushing defeat, with under 30 percent as voters punish them for their handling of the economic crisis and high unemployment.

One man said whoever wins on November 20 would have to make tough cuts that people would not like, but it would be the only way to get the country out of its bad financial situation.

Another woman said the election should not be seen as a two-horse race and that there are other parties that deserve to be heard and could provide different choices.

The left-wing Izquierda Unida is expected to increase its share of the vote as dissatisfied socialists switch their allegiance. The poll puts them in third position with over seven percent.

Also expecting to do better are the regional nationalist parties, including Convergencia i Unio which already controls the regional parliament in the northern Catalan part of Spain and is pushing for further autonomy.