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Spain grappled with a political impasse Monday after the results of Sunday’s general elections showed no single party securing the parliamentary majority needed to form a government, CNN reported.
The results showed that the center-right Partido Popular (PP) led the race with 136 seats, while the center-left Socialist Party of incumbent Prime Minister Pedro Sánchez came in second with 122.
Meanwhile, the far-right Vox party won 33 seats and Sánchez’s likely coalition partner Sumar secured 31 seats.
To govern, a party or coalition needs a working majority of 176 seats in the 350-seat parliament.
Most polls had suggested that the PP would win most votes, but not secure a majority. Others predicted that the party would consider a coalition with Vox, a move that would bring the far-right into government for the first time in decades.
Although the PP saw an increase in its vote share, the election results offered no simple route for a right-wing coalition to be formed.
Political analysts explained that Sunday’s early polls were a political gamble for Sánchez after his party suffered a series of defeats in regional and local elections in May.
During his term, the prime minister has pushed a progressive agenda, including policies on women’s rights and a euthanasia law. While these policies received support from urban areas, they resulted in a backlash from other parts of the country.
Observers noted that the prospects of coalition-building now remain uncertain, saying that it will take weeks of negotiations for parties to reach an agreement on forming a government.