• Latest opinion polls show Spain’s newest left-wing party losing steam
• Party image dogged by Venezuela ties, poor showings in regional elections
Spanish insurgent-left party Podemos appears to be losing steam, having sunk to fourth place among Spain’s political parties in national opinion polls just 10 months after it had occupied the top spot in voter surveys.
In January, the fledgling party was seen as winning as much as 28 percent of the ballots nationwide, were a national election to have been held at that time. But, a poll published after the recent Sept. 27 autonomous elections in the northern region of Cataluña, shows that Podemos had slipped to fourth place behind the left’s mainstay opposition Socialist party (PSOE), the ruling conservative Partido Popular (PP) and more recent center-right upstart, Ciudadanos.
Analysts have chalked up Podemos’ decline to a series of mishaps, including a weak showing in the regional elections in the southern region of Andalucia in March, followed by negative press over ties of Podemos leadership to the left-wing regime in Venezuela, plus a poor showing in regional elections in Cataluña last month — where Podemos won just 9 percent of the vote, sparking the resignation of eight local party leaders.