The latest poll published in Spain confirms a return to the traditional political pendulum between Socialists and the Popular Party.
The Sociological Research Centre poll published on Thursday is more closely watched as it based on a formidable pool of 2,500 interviewees. But, this poll does not stand alone. Polls by Demoscropia Servicios and ABC published in late July confirm the return to the pendulum.
The latest polls confirm the Socialists (PSOE) are the leading party and the indisputable leader of the left with numbers just under 30% (29,9%). Over the last five polls, the Socialists are polling between 25,3% (22/07) to 30%.
Prime Minister Pedro Sanchez rose to power in June and took a series of measures with an appeal to the left, including the appointment of a majority-female cabinet, taking in the Aquarius migrants and a proposal to link pension rises inflation.
Podemos are consolidating their position as the second power of the left, with open channels to the regionalist movements and the less-than-reformists left. But, they were polling in the region of 20% in May and are now at 15,6%.
On the right, PP is rebounding from the low 20s of the first half of July to trucking PSOE. Polls are not yet entirely reflecting a shift in political strategy by the new leader, Pablo Casado.
The new leader of PP, Casado, took over less than two weeks ago from former prime minister Mariano Rajoy.
Casado positions himself against Spain’s openness to migration, drawing a clear dividing line both with the liberal Ciudadanos and PSOE. The 37-year old is also affirming Rajoy’s tough stance against regionalism. What is clear from all successive polls is that PP is, once again, in the lead 5-7% ahead of the more liberal Ciudadanos. The two parties were polling at par less than a month ago.
Currently, Sanchez controls merely 84 seats in the 350-seat Spanish parliament. His government relies on the support of Unidos Podemos and smaller regional parties. Podemos has seen its polling tumble, which should provide PSOE with some reassurance for its minority government.
However, Sanchez did lose a key budget vote last week, as regionalists and Podemos abstained, so the prospect of fresh elections is not remote.