Socialists gird for fight of their lives in 26-J elections

PSOE's César Luena with Antonio Hernando (right) at meeting of party's electoral committee Tuesday. Photo: La Vanguardia
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• Socialists say campaign will focus on ousting conservative PP government
• Spokesman raps Podemos for leftward shift, ‘obsession’ with surpassing PSOE

As Podemos and Izquierda Unida (IU) negotiators continue to meet to try to hammer out an electoral alliance and Catalan Socialist Party (PSC-PSOE) leaders meet to sort out a consensus slate that will avert rebellion in the ranks in Catalonia, Spain’s Socialist party (PSOE) leadership in Madrid has acknowledged the party is in for the fight of its life in upcoming second-round general elections on June 26th (26-J).

Speaking to reporters after a Tuesday meeting of the PSOE’s federal electoral committee at party headquarters in Madrid, spokesman Antonio Hernando said Spain’s main opposition party will campaign “as though this were the last campaign of our lives” and said the PSOE has one objective: to win the elections and to get rid of the conservative Partido Popular government of acting-Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy.

Hernando nevertheless expressed PSOE’s preoccupation with anti-austerity party Podemos’ move further to the left in seeking a 26-J electoral coalition with IU — itself a coalition of parties and movements formed around the Spanish Communist Party (PCE) — criticizing Podemos leader Pablo Iglesias for being “obsessed with surpassing the PSOE (as the largest party on the left) at the cost of the right-wing continuing in power.”

► Read More in Spanish at La Vanguardia and El Mundo …

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