Spain: Polls loom again as Rajoy loses confidence vote

MPs reject the acting PM's bid to form a government, bringing the country closer to a potential third vote in a year.

    Rajoy secured 170 votes, six short of the majority needed to form a government [Reuters]
    Rajoy secured 170 votes, six short of the majority needed to form a government [Reuters]

    Spain's acting prime minister has failed to secure enough votes in parliament to form a new government, bringing the country closer to a potential third election in a year.

    Mariano Rajoy, the leader of the conservative Popular Party (PP), lost Wednesday's vote of confidence after receiving 170 of the 176 votes needed for an absolute majority in the 350-member body.

    He was backed only by his own party, the centrist Ciudadanos and a lone MP from the Canary Islands. 

    Spaniards voted for the second time within a six-month span at the end of June, after the four main political parties failed to agree on a coalition when December's general election resulted in a hung parliament.

    The PP, in power since 2011, won the most seats in December and June's elections but fell short of an absolute majority both times as voters angry over corruption and austerity supported new formations.


    READ MORE: Tension and suspense as polls open in Spain elections


    Another confidence vote will be held on Friday, in which Rajoy will only need more votes in favour than against. 

    The Socialists, who came second in the polls, have steadfastly refused to back Rajoy, with leader Pedro Sanchez telling the assembly that the acting prime minister had "no credibility".

    If there is no breakthrough, voters will be asked to return to the polls on December 25, the date determined by timings laid out in Spanish election law.

    Socialists and other parties have already proposed shortening the campaign so a repeat election can be held on December 18.

     

    SOURCE: Agencies


    YOU MIGHT ALSO LIKE

    Interactive: Coding like a girl

    Interactive: Coding like a girl

    What obstacles do young women in technology have to overcome to achieve their dreams? Play this retro game to find out.

    Why America's Russia hysteria is dangerous

    Why America's Russia hysteria is dangerous

    The US exaggerating and obsessing about foreign threats seems quite similar to what is happening in Russia.

    Heron Gate mass eviction: 'We never expected this in Canada'

    Hundreds face mass eviction in Canada's capital

    About 150 homes in one of Ottawa's most diverse and affordable communities are expected to be torn down in coming months