|Original graphic from El Pais|
According to the article in the CoastRider, which I am beginning to recognize as the best of the bunch of free, English-language weekly newspapers in our area, the PP will have an absolute majority in Congress, having won 186 seats, with the PSOE ending with 110. There are several other minority parties in Spain, and an article in News from Spain reproduces the above graphic from El País that shows how many there are and how little influence they will have. In a widespread move to the right, the PP will rule in 11 of Spain's 17 comunidades autónomas," regions comparable to U.S. states, and when a nation calls its states "autonomous" you can be sure they have power.
Reportedly Zapatero went down to widespread discontent with his failure to handle the economic crisis. Not a surprise: Denmark recently went red, booting out its conservative government for failure to handle the crisis better. Unfortunately it is easy to vote against the status quo and hope that the opposition will have a better plan. Hope is about all that the Spanish have, though, since the new president, Mariano Rajoy, didn't really talk during the campaign about the direction or extent of the cuts to be made to improve the economy of Spain.
Meanwhile it should take only another three weeks to form the new government, or maybe a little less, since Zapatero has pledged to speed up his release of power as much as possible. I noticed that less than three weeks passed after the Danish election in September before its new government legitimately took charge. This sure beats the almost three months it takes for the USA to inaugurate a president after November elections. So what do you think the chances of getting Republicans and Democrats to agree to a constitutional amendment to change the date of U.S. inaugurations might be?