The Spanish Socialist Leader Pedro Sanchez has broken four months of political deadlock in Spain today by securing enough support in a parliamentary vote to guarantee him a second term.
With 179 votes in his favour, in the 350 seat assembly Pedro Sanchez will be sworn in by the King as the next Spanish premier.
The win by Sanchez comes after weeks of intense negotiations with smaller regional parties from catalonia, the Basque Country, Galicia and the Canary islands. Sanchez has offered them a number of concessions in exchange for their support.
Among the concessions, an amnesty bill for those who took part in the 2017 catalan Independence referendum. A deal which has angered many in Spain, giving rise to demonstrations and social tension. The Partido Popular Opposition has labelled the amnesty bill “ unconstitutional”.
During the two day investiture debate, Sanchez has defended the Amnesty bill arguing it would help to difuse the situation in Catalonia and work towards healing Spain.
During the debate, many of the regional parties backing Sanchez at this vote have expressed their disagreement with the Amnesty bill, but said they would vote for Sanchez because they would be prioritizing the needs of the people they represent.
If he wins the vote, the second term for Sanchez will be a difficult one. Those who are supporting him at today’s vote have warned they will be keeping a close eye and will be making sure he delivers on his promises to them.
And while Sanchez may have secured a majority, those supporting him have been non-committal on the big issue of the Spanish Budget, with many analysts highlighting this hurdle and how it would need to be negotiated in good faith.
A spokesperson for Junts already warned that the party would not support any government initiative if they see no progress on matters.
And although he may have won support by offering an amnesty, Sanchez could face a lot of pressure during his potential second term, from the pro-independence camp to authorize an independence referendum