Spain's Socialists Trounced Amid Economic Turmoil

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    May 24, 2011 1:43 AM GMT
    http://www.cnbc.com/id/43129781

    Spain's ruling Socialists suffered a crushing defeat to conservatives in local and regional elections Sunday, yielding power even in traditional strongholds against a backdrop of staggering unemployment and unprecedented sit-ins by Spaniards furious with what they see as politicians who don't care about their plight.

    Prime Minister Jose Luis Rodriguez Zapatero said the result was due punishment of his government for the state of the economy — the jobless rate is a eurozone high of 21.3 percent. But he said he had no plans to move up general elections, which must be held by March of next year, and pledged to press on with job-creating reforms despite the loud outcry of opposition to his party.

    The win for the conservative opposition Popular Party puts it in even a stronger position to win the general elections and return to power after eight years of Socialist rule.

    In what Spanish media said was the worst performance on record by the Socialist Party in local and regional elections, the numbers reflecting the loss were stunning: the conservative Popular Party won at the municipal level by about two million votes, compared to 150,000 in its win in 2007, and in 13 regional governments that were up for grabs, Zapatero's party lost in virtually all of them.
  • calibro

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    May 24, 2011 2:38 AM GMT
    yeah, and in france they want to elect socialists to replace the conservatives who caused a giant economic failure too. agenda-much?
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    May 24, 2011 2:42 AM GMT
    Not at all surprised. Ever since democracy was established, it's gone back and forth between Partido Socialista Obrero and Partido Popular depending on the economic situation.

    I can't think of any positive accomplishments from Partido Socialista Obrero other than LGBT rights (particularly same-sex marriage), and the fact that Zapatero is King Juan Carlos' right-hand man.
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    May 24, 2011 3:25 AM GMT
    calibro saidyeah, and in france they want to elect socialists to replace the conservatives who caused a giant economic failure too. agenda-much?


    thats wierd, they first elected the conservatives in order to boost the sluggish economy.... lack of reasoning here
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    May 24, 2011 5:22 AM GMT
    Greenhopper said
    thats wierd, they first elected the conservatives in order to boost the sluggish economy.... lack of reasoning here


    It's not "Economy is bad, we need conservatives", but "Economy is bad, we need the party that is not in charge right now".
  • vintovka

    Posts: 588

    May 24, 2011 5:38 AM GMT
    Voters punish current administrations for current economic conditions regardless of who caused the mess (if such blame could even be assigned reliably). It may be that voters imagine (probably falsely) that politicians are in control of the economy, but it is equally possible that they are just venting their frustration on the incumbents because they can't fire their employer, their landlord or their credit card company. Voters also punish elected officials for droughts, disease and shark attacks.* The Spanish turned on the socialists in power because the economy was bad, and coastal New Jersey voters turned on Woodrow Wilson because there had been shark attacks in 1916.

    *(http://www.international.ucla.edu/research/private/article.asp?parentid=15753)
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    May 24, 2011 3:58 PM GMT
    calibro saidyeah, and in france they want to elect socialists to replace the conservatives who caused a giant economic failure too. agenda-much?


    Agenda? I note that the "far right" party in France has also risen in the polling. The interesting about the evolution in politics is not so much a left-right divide but the gradual and reluctant move to increasing liberty in both social and economic spheres - as a simple principle of the survival of the fittest (the more free your economy, the better you do)

    Governments be they right or left give up power reluctantly and generally as a last resort. The "giant economic failures" are the direct result not of markets but bad policy - and "greed" as much by bureaucrats as corporations.