elections day

Alternative left leader to seek agreements with other leftist parties to run Barcelona City Council

May 25, 2015 09:50 PM | ACN

The most likely future Mayor of Barcelona, Ada Colau, has held a press conference the day after election night, in which her alternative left, green and pro-self-determination coalition Barcelona en Comú became the most-voted party in the Catalan capital, obtaining 11 seats, far from the 21-seat absolute majority. Colau stated that she would “start a round of talks” with the other left-wing parties to look for government agreements as of this Monday. She will contact the social-democrat Catalan independence party ERC (5 seats), the Catalan Socialist Party (4 seats) and the radical independence and alternative left-wing party CUP (3 seats). However, she did not rule out the possibility of reaching specific agreements with other parties on some important issues. She also highlighted her commitment to Catalonia’s right to self-determination. In addition, Colau also accused the current Mayor from the centre-right pro-Catalan State coalition CiU, Xavier Trias, of signing last-minute contracts before leaving office.

Left-wing victory in Catalonia's municipal elections and increase of self-determination representatives

May 25, 2015 01:55 AM | ACN

The municipal elections in Catalonia have resulted in five major highlights. First of all, the overall victory of left-wing parties, in a context of a gradual economic recovery after 7 years of economic crisis, with high unemployment levels, lower salaries and corruption scandals. However, the centre-right pro-Catalan State coalition CiU is still the vost voted party throughout Catalonia, but losing support. Secondly, parties clearly supporting Catalonia's self-determination process significantly increase their representation and electoral support, while those opposing Catalonia's self-determination lose both representatives and votes across the board. Thirdly, there has been a major change in the Catalan capital's City Council, with alternative-left and green coalition Barcelona en Comú overtaking the CiU by a close margin, which runs the Catalan Government. Four, except for Barcelona, the governing parties in the main Catalan town halls resist, although almost all of them have their support reduced. Finally, the main traditional parties register significant loss of support while secondary parties improve their results and enter many city councils for the first time. Two parties enter a number of town halls for the first time: anti-Catalan nationalism party Ciutadans (C's) and radical independence and alternative left party CUP.

Alternative left wins Barcelona elections by a close margin and government formation is uncertain

May 25, 2015 01:15 AM | ACN

The alternative left coalition Barcelona en Comú, led by activist Ada Colau, has won the municipal elections in the Catalan capital by a close margin. The green and post-communist coalition has obtained 11 representatives, far from the 21 seat absolute majority, and governing will depend on the forming of a coalition. Colau defined her victory as that of "David against Goliath". She also stressed her commitment to Catalonia's right to self-determination. The centre-right pro-Catalan State coalition CiU, which was holding the mayoral office, has gone from 14 to 10 seats. The anti-Catalan nationalism party Ciutadans (C's) will enter the City Council for the first time, having obtained 5 seats. The social-democrat independence party ERC has also obtained 5 seats, 3 more than in 2011. The Catalan Socialist Party (PSC) has gone from 11 to 4 seats. The People's Party (PP) has gone from 9 to only 3 representatives. The radical independence and alternative left party CUP will also sit on the City Council for the first time, with 3 seats.

Alternative-left coalition to win in Barcelona with 10-12 seats, while incumbent CiU Mayor to get 9-11 seats, according to exit polls

May 24, 2015 08:12 PM | ACN

There may be a major change in the Catalan capital's City Council according to the exit polls, where the alternative left coalition Barcelona en Comú may have won this Sunday's municipal elections with between 10-12 seats but looks to be far from the 21-seat absolute majority. The centre-right pro-Catalan State coalition CiU, which holds the mayoral office, is set to go from 14 to 9-11 seats. Therefore, the exit polls point towards a change in Mayor but the results are not clear enough and it in fact may be a dead heat between the CiU and Barcelona en Comú. The Catalan Socialist Party (PSC) and the People's Party (PP) are forecast to lose many seats, going from 11 and 9 seats respectively to 4 or 5 each. Furthermore, the anti-Catalan nationalism party Ciutadans (C's) looks set to enter the City Council for the first time and obtain also 4 or 5 seats. As well as this, two pro-independence parties would also increase their results, if the exit polls are accurate. The left-wing Catalan independence party ERC could go from 2 to 3/4 seats, while the radical independence and alternative left party CUP may enter the City Council for the first time, with 3 or 4 seats.

Higher turnout in Catalonia's municipal elections, while citizens vote with uncertain political horizons

May 24, 2015 07:09 PM | ACN

By 6 pm (CET time), two hours before the electoral polls close, 44.58% of Catalans had already voted, 6 percentage point higher than the 38.24% registered at the same time in 2011. However, in Barcelona, the turnout is much higher, reaching 46.37% (while four years ago it was 38.21%). This 8 percentage point difference is due to the political battle taking place in the Catalan capital, where the alternative left coalition Barcelona en Comú has a chance of winning the elections ahead of the incumbent Mayor and candidate for the centre-right pro-Catalan State coalition CiU, Xavier Trias. Left-wing voters are likely to have flocked to the electoral polls with the hope of displacing Trias, while many other voters are also likely to have gone to the electoral polls in great numbers to stop the alternative left candidate and former social activist Ada Colau from winning the elections. Election day has gone off without incident but with uncertain political horizons.

Low turnout expected for British nationals in Spain for UK general elections 2015

May 7, 2015 01:10 AM | Shobha Prabhu-Naik Garaialde

Spain is home to around 300,000 registered British nationals, 20,000 of whom reside in Catalonia and retain the right to vote in the forthcoming general elections in the UK on the 7th of May, according to date from the Spanish Statistics Institute given in 2014. The election this year is especially important as polls suggest that no combination of parties will win a stable majority which could be the end of the road for a strong government. Moreover, the election is more important than usual for British nationals living in Spain as in the rest of Europe as Cameron has promised that a Conservative victory will renegotiate Britain’s relations with the EU and put the result to an in/out referendum on membership by the end of 2017. A British exit from Europe could potentially lead to British nationals abroad facing several difficulties in regards to freedom of movement across Europe. On the other hand, May 7th could also mark the point of no return for the troubled union between England and Scotland, due to a surge in support for the secessionist Scottish National Party (SNP).

Rajoy does not rule out holding Spanish elections on same day as Catalan vote

April 27, 2015 09:47 PM | ACN

The Spanish Prime Minister, Mariano Rajoy, has not ruled out the possibility of holding the Spanish General Elections – which should normally be held in late November or early December – at the same time as the Catalan Elections, which are to take place on 27 September. The Catalan Elections are to be transformed into a 'de facto' plebiscite on independence and have been called a year early, as the only option left in order to hold a self-determination vote, after Rajoy's total opposition to any such vote and his failing to even talk about it. During the last few weeks, the possibility of Rajoy calling the Spanish Elections early in order to ensure that they coincide with the Catalan vote (with the aim of partially neutralising the plebiscite effect) has been widely discussed. However, Rajoy also said that he would like to hold them "at the end of the year".

Turnout in Catalonia grows from 36.9% to 47.4%, spurred by self-determination debate

May 25, 2014 11:00 PM | ACN

In Spain as a whole, turnout for the European parliamentary elections increased slightly, while it increased considerably in a Catalonia in the midst of the independence debate. In 2009 only 36.94% of those Catalans on the voting register voted in the European elections, the lowest turnout ever recorded in any election during the 37 years of democracy. Now, some 47.4% of Catalans have cast their vote, an increase of more than 10 percentage points. In the whole of Spain, turnout increased by only one percentage point when compared to the 44.5% turnout from 2009, reaching 45.6%, sustained by the high increase in Catalonia. In fact, in the rest of Spain, turnout decreased in almost all regions, with only a few exceptions. Turnout also stagnated at EU level, going from 43% in 2009 to 43.1% in the newest elections. Parties and civil society organisations supporting self-determination asked Catalan citizens to vote in these elections in order to send a message to the world: Catalans want to hold an independence vote and to remain within the EU.

Catalans vote in the European elections with self-determination and budget cuts in their minds

May 23, 2014 11:15 PM | ACN

The 2014 European parliamentary elections are likely to become a milestone for Catalan people for three main reasons, which taken together send a strong message to the international community, the EU institutions and Member State governments, including that of Spain. Firstly, political parties and civil society organisations supporting self-determination have called citizens to vote in these elections as a way to push for a referendum on independence to take place on the 9th of November of this year. This may significantly increase turnout from the low 36.94% registered in 2009. Secondly, the two main self-determination parties are likely to be the most voted parties in Catalonia. In addition, the Left-Wing Independence Party (ERC) may go from 4th place in the 2009 poll to 1st place this time around. Thirdly, support for the two main parties behind the EU austerity measures that turned into drastic budget cuts in southern Europe – the People’s Party and the Socialist Party – is likely to plummet in Catalonia.

Catalan diplomacy participates in election observation mission in Costa Rica

February 4, 2014 05:27 PM | ACN

The Public Diplomacy Council of Catalonia (Diplocat) has participated in a short observation mission in Costa Rica for the presidential and parliamentary elections which were held last Sunday. According to a press release, Diplocat deployed 8 electoral observation experts on the ground to visit 50 polling stations across Costa Rica. In their report, Diplocat congratulated the people of Costa Rica and the Elections Supreme Court for the peaceful and well-organised electoral process. However, they also uncovered the existence of inequalities between political parties during the campaign, especially regarding access to the media. By participating in such missions, Catalonia reasserts its commitment to promoting peace and strengthening democracy worldwide.  

Pro-independence parties would clearly win the Catalan elections but the governing CiU would lose support

November 25, 2012 10:11 PM | CNA

According to the exit polls, the parties supporting independence would obtain between 58% and 64% of the seats in the Catalan Parliament in the elections with the highest voter turnout ever. The Centre-Right Catalan Nationalist Coalition (CiU) would win the elections again but it might lose some support, falling far short of an absolute majority. The Left-Wing Catalan Independence Party (ERC) would double its results, becoming the second largest force in the Parliament for the first time ever. Support for the Catalan Socialist Party (PSC) would plummet and it could lose 40% of its seats. The People’s Party (PP) might stagnate or even lose 2 seats. The Catalan Green Socialist and Communist Coalition (ICV-EUiA) might stagnate or increase by 2 seats. The anti-Catalan nationalist party could double its results but will probably remain a small party. The radical left-wing and pro-independence CUP could enter the Parliament.

The PP wins practically all over Spain with the exception of Catalonia and the Basque Country

November 21, 2011 02:47 AM | CNA / Gaspar Pericay Coll

The conservative People’s Party (PP) has won the Spanish General Election with an absolute majority. The PP obtained 186 MPs in the 350-seat Spanish Parliament, its best ever result. The Socialist Party (PSOE), who are the current Spanish Government, obtained the worst results in its history, winning just 110 MPs. In Catalonia, another historical change has taken place: the Centre-Right Catalan Nationalists (CiU) have won in the Spanish elections for the first time. The Socialists lose 44% of their MPs in Catalonia, and their main candidate Carme Chacón, is in a bad position to lead the PSOE after Zapatero. The PP continues as Catalonia’s third party, despite an improvement in its results.