In a recent turn of events, Alberto Núñez Feijóo, leader of the center-right Popular Party, has once again failed to secure the necessary votes to become the prime minister of Spain. With a majority of lawmakers rejecting his candidacy, Pedro Sánchez, the caretaker prime minister and leader of the Socialist Party, now has an opportunity to take the reins of the government.
The rejection of Feijóo’s bid has left King Felipe VI with the task of convening political leaders to determine the most suitable candidate for the position of prime minister. It is widely anticipated that Sánchez will be the obvious choice, given the challenges faced by his conservative rival in forming a government.
To be reappointed as prime minister, Sánchez must obtain majority support in Parliament, which includes securing the backing of the Junts party. This party, controlled by Carles Puigdemont, the self-exiled former Catalan President, has demanded a blanket amnesty for all implicated in the failed 2017 Catalan independence referendum. While Sánchez is expected to meet this demand, his stance on a new vote for Catalan self-determination remains uncertain.
In addition to the support of the Junts party, Sánchez also needs the backing of the separatist Republican Left of Catalonia party. These parties have recently signed a pact in which they will only support the Socialist leader if he explicitly commits to creating the necessary conditions for a referendum.
Negotiations between the Catalan separatist groups and Madrid will undoubtedly be delicate due to the lack of trust between the parties. Furthermore, there is a time constraint, as the initial rejection of Feijóo’s candidacy triggers a two-month deadline. At the end of this period, Parliament must be dissolved, leading to a new national election held 47 days later.
If Sánchez wishes to avoid a new election on January 14, 2024, he must act swiftly to secure the support of the separatist groups. Only then can he have a chance at becoming the prime minister of Spain, ushering in a potential new era for the country.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)
Who is Pedro Sánchez?
Pedro Sánchez is the caretaker prime minister of Spain and the leader of the Socialist Party.
Why did Núñez Feijóo fail to become the prime minister?
Núñez Feijóo failed to secure the necessary votes from Spanish lawmakers to become the prime minister.
What role does the King of Spain play in this process?
The King of Spain, King Felipe VI, is responsible for summoning political leaders and determining the most suitable candidate for the position of prime minister.
Why does Sánchez need the support of the Junts party?
Sánchez needs the support of the Junts party, controlled by Carles Puigdemont, to secure a majority in Parliament and be reappointed as the prime minister. The party has demanded a blanket amnesty for those involved in the 2017 Catalan independence referendum.
What are the consequences of the rejection of Feijóo’s candidacy?
The rejection of Feijóo’s candidacy triggers a two-month deadline, at the end of which Parliament must be dissolved, leading to a new national election held 47 days later.