Conciliation vs. intransigence: Polls show voter shift to United Left, Ciudadanos as new elections loom

IU's Alberto Garzón (L), Ciudadanos' Albert Rivera. Photos: IU (Garzón), Carlos Delgado (Rivera) / Wikimedia Commons
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• IU could recapture seats from Podemos, Ciudadanos net 20 more Deputies •

As Spain’s politial parties continue to seek a negotiated choice of a new president before a May 2nd deadline automatically triggers new elections, opinion polls show left-wing voters moving away from anti-austerity party Podemos and back toward the United Left (Izquierda Unida, or IU), while voters on the right are abandoning the Partido Popular (PP) in favor of centre-right party Ciudadanos.

Five separate polls taken during March, after the failed investiture vote of Socialist party (PSOE) leader Pedro Sánchez but before Podemos’ eruption of internal party strife in mid-month, show a significant shift of voters away from Podemos and toward IU, indicating a negative response to the perceived negotiating intransigence of Podemos and suggesting voters would reward the conciliatory negotiating stance of IU leader Alberto Garzón were new elections to be held.

At the same time, two of the five polls show clearly that the PP’s intransigence in the face of Ciudadanos leader Albert Rivera’s indefatigable efforts to broker a negotiated settlement would result in a double-digit loss of seats in Congress for the PP, with Ciudadanos gaining as many as 20 additional seats to surpass Podemos as the third-ranked party behind the PP and PSOE in Congress.

► Read More in Spanish at El País and El Periódico …

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