Latest poll shows that new elections would not end political stalemate

Metroscopia survey for EL PAÍS reveals that the same situation would emerge from fresh vote

PSOE chief Pedro Séanchez (l) speaks to party organization secretary, César Luena.
PSOE chief Pedro Séanchez (l) speaks to party organization secretary, César Luena.EFE

More than three months have passed since the December 20 general elections – three months of political stalemate, negotiations, photos, letters and WhatsApp messages that have only served to irritate voters and convince them that there will be new elections.

The number of people who consider the current political situation in Spain to be negative has reached a new record: 94% of those surveyed, according to a new Metroscopia poll for EL PAÍS, the results of which were released at the weekend. And the second round of voting will not solve the problem: the survey reveals that a second general election would just turn up the same result: the incumbent Popular Party would take most votes but fall short of a majority, followed by the Socialist Party (PSOE), Ciudadanos and Podemos.

There are less than 30 days before May 2 arrives, the date at which the Constitution states that new polls must be held if no one manages to form a government. And according to the poll, citizens are already convinced that they will have to turn out to vote once more.

The majority of those surveyed are convinced that, in place of the two-party PP-PSOE system that had been in place since the return to democracy at the end of the 1970s, the new scenario, with a number of parties reaching deals, is better.

According to the voter intention section of the poll, the PP would take 27.7% of the vote, barely losing a point compared to the results obtained on December 20. The many corruption cases that have emerged related to the party since the elections appear not to have had an effect.

The PSOE, meanwhile, stays in second place, and holds the distance from the PP seen in December, of approximately seven percentage points. If they were to be held today, the Socialists would take 21% of the vote at elections, one point down on the December result – the worst in the party’s history.

Emerging center-right group Ciudadanos, meanwhile, has improved its standing among the electorate, thanks to its efforts to reach a deal with the PSOE and the positive perception of its leader, Albert Rivera. The survey sees the group in third place, with 18.8% of the vote – almost five points above the result seen on December 20.

Anti-austerity group Podemos, meanwhile, has suffered the most from this period of post-election negotiation. The image of its leader, Pablo Iglesias, had already been seen to suffer in previous surveys, but there are now two other negative elements to add: the organizational crisis within the party, with Iglesias in conflict with his number two, Íñigo Errejón, and the general perception among voters that the party has made scant efforts to break the political stalemate, given its unwillingness to do deals with the Socialists or Ciudadanos. Podemos scored 15.9% in the voter intention poll, almost five points down on the December results.

English version by Simon Hunter.

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