Today, Monday 29th morning, the Head of State españolPedro Sánchez surprised by announcing that the general elections scheduled for December this year will be brought forward to Sunday, July 23.
Meera: The Popular Party is calling for political change in Spain with the progress of the elections
His decision came last Sunday night after learning the results of the municipal and regional elections in Spain.
These elections, on the one hand, represented an enormous setback for the Iberian left, with Sánchez’s PSOE (Spanish Socialist Workers Party) losing important historical socialist squares such as the Valencian Community or Aragon.
On the other hand, the conservative Popular Party (PP) secured an absolute majority in Madrid society and was crowned the big winner of the day with 31.53% of the total national vote.
Sánchez considered the results a defeat “in the first person” and that the vote was a message beyond the municipal and regional governments, according to the company statement from the Palacio de la Moncloa, the headquarters of the president.
For the Director of the Institute of European Studies of the University of Peru (UDEP), Sánchez’s decision will respond more to the impulse and desire to eliminate his allies in recent years: United v Can.
– Pedro Sánchez’s decision has taken everyone by surprise.
And he is doing a strange thing like moving the elections to July 23. It will be a full summer vacation, and many will be away from their usual residence. It is so strange that I see it as the slap of the drowned. A lot of people don’t vote because they’re somewhere else and don’t want to mess with voting by mail.
– What is the motive behind the snap election, beyond Sanchez accepting defeat as his own?
I would say wounded pride. He is deeply wounded. We are looking at it because it was done without even consulting the Council of Ministers (preceding the election). He called them after the announcement. It is very strange, it is the reaction of an angry child because they took away his favorite toy. From a political perspective, the reading he would have done is that his Podemos partners, whom he is most tired of, are at their lowest point. Perhaps he wants to take advantage of the confusion so that Podemos’ votes go to the PSOE. The only political maneuver I see behind this hasty decision is that they don’t have time to reorganize.
– Break free from the alliance and bet everything on the game?
Yes. Look for bipolarity (PSOE and PP), taking advantage of the fact that the Ciudadanos have disappeared from the map and it is not even known if they are going to present themselves. We can think of the return of the PSOE, the PP and the Catalan and Basque nationalists. Let’s also remember that Sánchez supported radical Basque nationalists, which was one of the reasons behind his downfall.
– What are the main successes of the PP using the mistakes of the PSOE?
Good from PP and Vox. Both took advantage of Sánchez’s weaknesses, such as agreeing with the EH Bild (the Euskal Herria Bild, an alliance of the Basque left and the extreme left) that many socialists also considered wrong. This shows that Sanchez was ready to rule at any cost. On the other hand, Alberto Núñez Feijóo (the current leader of the PP) managed to turn these local and municipal elections into a national referendum. “It’s Sanchez or Spain,” he told a rally. The only one spared from the PSOE was the leader of Castilla – La Mancha, Emiliano García-Page, who is highly critical of Sánchez. The head of government made the mistake of being everywhere, apparently he was too vain and thought he would save the election, but he managed to overshadow the more deserving regional leaders. He himself said that those who made acceptable policy were removed from the government.
– Vox has tripled its councilors, now even in regions like Catalonia. Where did they get so many votes?
They took great advantage of the fall of the Ciudadanos. Despite not having the same profile, they are an alternative for those seeking a different vote, but the days of Ciudadanos have passed. A review of the election results is still pending.
– Is the relationship with Vox comfortable for PP?
No. Vox’s president, Santiago Abascal, wants a national agreement. PP, on the other hand, will try to negotiate only where necessary. So there will be some interesting negotiations.
– On July 1, Spain will take over the presidency of the EU, what effect will the change of regime have on the entire regional mandate?
This is a factor that adds another point of immaturity to Sanchez’s decision. A change of government in the midst of a European presidency is huge. But Spain has a foreign secretary in the EU that is very professional, they have been working on these issues for years, and the main part of the presidency is carried out by those senior officials. There will be a few months of uncertainty, especially in the weeks when the government will be formed, but thanks to its negotiators I believe it will be better technically. However, I fear it will be a low-profile presidency because of those first few months.