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No end in sight to the pain in Spain?

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By Catherine Hardy  with Reuters, AFP
No end in sight to the pain in Spain?
  • Fresh election “unlikely” to end political deadlock
  • More likely to abstain
  • “Union of the left could prove uncomfortable for the PSOE

The pain in Spain

Research suggests a fresh election due to be held in Spain on June 26 is unlikely to break the political stalemate to form a government.

A previous vote in December produced the most fragmented result in decades.

Metroscopia poll

  • Published by El Pais newspaper
  • 1,200 polled between April 26-28
  • People’s Party (PP) – 29% of votes (up from 28.7% in December)
  • Socialists (PSOE) – 20.3% (down from 22)
  • Podemos – 18.1% (down from 20.7)
  • Ciudadanos – 16.9 (up from 13.9)

Observers say the tiny variations in percentages from December are unlikely to translate into major changes in seats.

At least three parties are needed to obtain a majority.

Abstention rate

Four months of political bickering and failure to form a government are likely to boost abstention rates.

Around 30% say they plan to abstain, compared to 26.8% in December.

The situation could also play in favour of the two traditionally-dominant parties, the PP and the PSOE.

Podemos and Ciudadanos are still seen as lacking a strong enough structure to mobilise voters in many rural areas.

A union on the Left?

It was announced last week that Podemos is considering running on a joint platform with the far-left party, Izquierda Unida.

A combination of the two would capture 22.3% of the vote, overtaking the PSOE as Spain’s main left-wing party.

Experts say this could put the Socialists in the uneasy position of having to choose between being the junior coalition partner in a left-wing government or going into a grand coalition with the centre-right PP.