(Bloomberg) -- Spain’s acting Prime Minister Pedro Sanchez goes to parliament Monday to seek backing for his bid to form a government.
He’ll be making his case in a process that will probably last the best part of four days, culminating in a final vote on July 25. His Socialist party won the most seats in general elections held three months ago, but fell short of an absolute majority. To win the vote, Sanchez needs support from Podemos, a left-wing rival, and backing from other groups.
Talks with Podemos have gotten off to a good start. But if Sanchez fails to win parliamentary support this week, Spain will be a step closer to holding new elections. So it’s a big week for him, his party and the country. Here’s a guide to the next steps in the process:
Mon. 22: Investiture Debate StartsSanchez addresses parliament in Madrid from 12 p.m. in a bid to gain votes for his candidacy. Other party leaders also get a chance to speak from 4 p.m.Tues. 23: First VotePlenary session starts at 9 a.m. with more speeches. Once all the groups have taken part in the debate, a first vote takes place. Sanchez would need an absolute majority to win, that’s 176 votes out of total 350.The Socialists have 123 seats. The People’s Party, liberals of Ciudadanos and nationalists of Vox have said they will vote against Sanchez. The political arithmetic makes it unlikely Sanchez will win at this stage of the voting.Thurs. 24: Second VoteThis time, Sanchez would only need a simple majority. To get past this stage, Sanchez needs to line up support from Podemos and some more votes from other smaller groups, including, potentially, Catalan separatist parties. If he fails -- and the votes of Podemos will be crucial here -- the clock will start ticking toward elections.
If it comes to it, here’s how the the countdown process to new elections would play out:
Over a two-month period, Sanchez can continue his efforts to secure a majority and go back to parliament, if invited to do so by King Felipe VI.If he fails, the king would dissolve parliament and call new elections.A new vote -- Spain’s fourth general election in four years -- would take place in November.
To contact the reporter on this story: Macarena Munoz in Madrid at firstname.lastname@example.org
To contact the editors responsible for this story: Charles Penty at email@example.com, Lars Paulsson
For more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.com
©2019 Bloomberg L.P.