POLITIFILE :: Partido Socialista Obrero Español

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• Partido Socialista Obrero Español ~ Spanish Socialist Workers’ Party (PSOE)

PSOE_150Spain’s Partido Socialista Obrero Español, or PSOE, was founded in 1879 and is the country’s oldest political party and largest party on the left of Spain’s political spectrum. A Socialist and Marxist party for the first 100 years of its existence, after the 1975 death of dictator Francisco Franco the PSOE jettisoned its Marxist nomenclature in 1979 and became the centre-left democratic-socialist party that it remains today.

A full member party of the Socialist International since 1951, the PSOE is also a member of the international Progressive Alliance of social-democratic political parties and of the pan-European Party of European Socialists, currently holding 14 of Spain’s 54 seats in the European Parliament.

The PSOE has been the governing party in Spain since 1st June 2018, after winning a parliamentary “no confidence” motion in the Spanish Congress against President Mariano Rajoy of the Partido Popular by a vote of 180-169.

In the 10th November 2019 general election, the PSOE won 6,752,983 votes, for a 28 percent share of the total vote, down from 28.68 percent in the last-previous election in April 2019, which translated into 120 seats in Congress, three less than it held in the previous session of Congress.

In the 1920s, the PSOE was the only party on the political left that was tolerated, allowed to organize and even granted cabinet-level posts during the 1923-31 dictatorship of Miguel Primo de Rivera, a situation which gained it the lasting enmity of other left-wing parties and movements. The PSOE played a leading role in the coalition governments of the 1931-33 Second Republic period and in February 1936 was part of the Popular Front coalition of left-wing, anarchist, communist and nationalist parties that won the general election. During Spain’s 1936-39 Civil War, the PSOE presided over the Republican government under the administrations of prime ministers Francisco Largo Caballero y Juan Negrín.

After the Civil War, the PSOE remained a clandestine organization with many of its leadership forced into exile until 1977, when following the death of dictator Francisco Franco the country underwent a democratic opening that is known as the “Democratic Transition” period. Since that time, the PSOE has governed Spain on two occasions: for 14 consecutive years from 1982-1996 under PSOE General Secretary Felipe González and again from 2004-2011 under party General Secretary José Luis Rodríguez Zapatero.

More about the PSOE can be found online at the following links:






Updated as of 12/Nov/2019

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