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Spain

Yearbook 2015

Spain. According to COUNTRYAAH, The re-enacted political landscape in Spain paved the way for an exciting election year and it was clear that the two-party system that prevailed since the onset of democracy in the late 1970s was overplayed. The new Left Party Podemos ("We Can") rapid progress was mainly reflected in a crusade for the Socialist Party (PSOE). On the right, the ruling Conservative People's Party (PP) was challenged by the central party Ciudadanos ("Citizens"), who had previously worked primarily in Catalonia.

2015 Spain

In the municipal and regional elections in May, the electoral support for the PP which lost its own majority held by the party in most of the 13 regions at stake. However, PP remained the largest party, closely followed by PSOE who also backed down. Podemos became the third largest party with a seat in all the regional parliaments, while Ciudadanos came in fourth place.

The parliamentary elections held in December reaffirmed the trend: PP and PSOE lost some further and supported by just under 29 and 22% of voters respectively, while Podemos received almost 21% and Ciudadanos 14%. Neither the right or left bloc gained their own majority and government formation was expected to be difficult.

Political drama was also offered as Catalonia continued to try to break away from Spain despite the central power. Regional President Artur Mas announced a new election held in September, which he explicitly called a vote on independence. Three separatist parties, including Mas's conservative government party CDC, together won just under half the votes but a majority of the mandate. The newly elected parliament voted in November to begin the path towards proclaiming its own republic. Madrid then appealed to the Constitutional Court, which annulled Catalan law and threatened politicians with prosecution.

In June, King Felipe took away his sister Cristina the title of Duchess of Palma de Mallorca. The reason was the suspicions of tax breaks against her and her husband. Despite widespread protests from both the opposition and human rights organizations, new legislation came into force at the end of the year, which restricted freedom of expression and the right of demonstration. In accordance with the "Monk Breeders Act", it was forbidden to criticize the state and its representatives, film or photograph police officers on duty and to attend public meetings if they were not given permission.

The economy showed signs of recovery after several years in deep weakening, with growth of around 3% and slowly falling unemployment.

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