• Unidos Podemos coincides 20th May Madrid demo with PSOE leadership vote
• Left coalition to use protest to confront Socialists over Rajoy motion of censure
In a clear effort to turn up the heat on the Socialist party (PSOE) on the eve of its selection of new leadership, the Unidos Podemos (United We Can) coalition in Congress says it will take to the streets to drum up support for its faltering motion for a parliamentary vote of no confidence in Spanish President Mariano Rajoy over corruption allegations involving his conservative governing Partido Popular (PP), planning a large demonstration at Madrid’s Puerta del Sol on Saturday 20th May, the day before the Socialists will vote to select their new party leader.
The call for a vote of no confidence, also referred to in Spain as a “motion of censure”, could if successful result in the ouster of Rajoy and the election of a new president by opposition parties in Congress. Aired last week by Unidos Podemos, the electoral coalition led by the populist anti-austerity party Podemos and the Izquierda Unida alliance and including regional allied movements from Catalonia (En Comú Podem), Valencia (Coalició Compromís), Galicia (En Marea) and other allied parties, the no confidence gambit failed to gain traction after meeting with resistance from other opposition parties, including the PSOE, centre-right Ciudadanos and the Partido Nacionalista Vasco (PNV).
Yesterday, Unidos Podemos leaders let it be known via Twitter that they will now convene a large protest in Madrid during the Socialist party congress and on the very eve of the PSOE’s election of a new general-secretary. Ostensibly called to “defend democracy” and against what Unidos Podemos calls the “Mafia Institutions” of congress and the Spanish Ibex stock exchange, the demonstration will also reportedly be leveraged by the organizers to explicitly call on the PSOE to reconsider its position and join Unidos Podemos in moving forward in a vote of no confidence against Rajoy.