SPANISH GENERAL ELECTIONS: Possible Abstention rate and Mas Madrid to further fraction leftist parties

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THE SOCIALIST PARTY of Spain’s acting Prime Minister Pedro Sanchez emerged as the biggest party in elections held in April but short of a majority, leaving him to negotiate with other parties to stay in power. His attempts to form a new government finally broke down last week as talks with Podemos, a party born out of street protests at Spain’s 2012 financial crisis, got nowhere. Elections are now due Nov. 10.

Recent polls have suggested the socialists would again finish first, but would once more fail to secure a majority. They predict the PP would finish second, picking up more seats than in April, while Citizens is expected to fare very badly, losing between 19 and 23 seats.

Abstention however could affect the results of a repeat general election. Some experts argue that leftist parties are more likely to be hurt by voters’ frustration at having to return to the polls for the fourth time in four years

The abstention rate is likely to be a deciding factor in the results of a repeat Spanish election. If there is a significantly lower voter turnout, the outcome of the vote may be less fractured. Some experts argue that this will hurt left-wing groups such as the Socialist Party (PSOE) and Unidas Podemos (a coalition between Podemos and the United Left), while others argue it will concentrate the vote more equally between the left-wing and right-wing blocs.

At the repeat election in 2016, voter participation fell from 73.2% to 69.8%

Mas Madrid, an anti-austerity party, who have opted to contest general elections in November could further fracture the left-wing vote.

Mas Madrid is led by Inigo Errejon, who broke ranks in January with Podemos, a party he had helped found. In elections held in May, the party won 20 seats in Madrid regional elections, compared with just seven won by Podemos.


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Written by

Cristina Hodgson

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