Spain’s Sanchez to seek new term as PM in lower house on Nov. 16

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MADRID – Spain’s acting Prime Minister Pedro Sanchez will seek to clinch a new term in a parliamentary vote on Thursday, the lower house speaker Francina Armengol said on Monday.

The vote will follow a parliamentary debate scheduled to start at noon local time (1100 GMT) on Wednesday, she told reporters.

Sanchez looks assured of winning a new term with an absolute majority of the 350-member assembly. He won the support of several regional parties – including the pro-Catalan independence party Junts and ERC – in exchange for a contentious law granting amnesty to those prosecuted over Catalonia’s attempt to secede from Spain in 2017.

The prospect of the amnesty has brought thousands of opponents to the streets over the past week.

After an inconclusive election on July 23, Sanchez’s Socialist Party spent weeks negotiating with smaller parties, most of which had supported him in 2020 for his previous term.

Sanchez has also secured the backing of lawmakers from hard-left Sumar, which is set to become the junior partner in the coalition government, Basque parties PNV and EH Bildu, left-wing Galician party BNG and the regionalist Canary Coalition.

With that alignment, his premiership bid is expected to garner 179 votes in favour and 171 against, with opposition from the conservative People’s Party’s 137 deputies, far-right Vox’s 33 legislators and the tiny Navarre outfit UPN’s one lawmaker. REUTERS

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