Spain: Socialism lags behind in opinion poll

Spain’s ruling People’s Party (PP) came first in an opinion poll on Sunday, one of its strongest results in recent surveys, while the Socialists and left-wing newcomer Podemos were in close second and third place respectively.

Of those surveyed, 28.6% said they would vote for the the centre-right PP, the poll showed, still a huge slip from the 44.6% absolute majority with which it won the 2011 elections.

Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy’s party does not have a big rival on the right of the political spectrum, and a large problem for the PP would be abstention, the poll showed.

Spain is expected to hold parliamentary elections later this year. Around a fifth of those who voted for the PP in 2011 would abstain this time round, the poll found.

Support for the Socialist Party (PSOE) has been sapped by Podemos, the poll showed. The Socialists would take 23.4% of the vote, down from the 28.8% they won in 2011. Year-old Podemos came a close third with 23.2%.

Of those who voted for the Socialists in the last general election, 18.7% would now choose Podemos, the poll showed.

The survey was carried out by pollsters NC Report, interviewing 1 600 Spaniards from December 9 to December 30 2015.–Reuters

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