Marc Sanjaume's blog

Alternative left wins Barcelona, Catalonia faces political changes

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The results of the local elections in Catalonia could be a turning point for Catalan politics with some important implications. The local elections occurred in a context of polarisation over the Catalan self-determination process, with Catalan elections on the horizon (unofficially called for the next September 27th), but also in one of indignation against the ruling parties in Madrid and Barcelona due to the effects of the economic crisis and austerity plans. The defeat in Barcelona of the ruling party CiU by Barcelona en Comú, a coalition of post-communists, social movements, and the new state-wide political force Podemos inspired by the Indignados Movement means a historical result for the alternative left that is now in position to rule the city and will probably need the support of the leftist secessionists of ERC and CUP.

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Catalonia towards self-determination in Europe

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The results of the European elections in Catalonia have several diverse implications for Catalan politics at a key moment for the country. First of all, the left-wing independence ERC's historical victory (23.7%), ahead of the governing centre-right CiU (21.9%), consolidates the referendum on Catalonia's political future scheduled for 9th of November next, which does not have the Spanish Government's support at this moment. Parties in favour of Catalonia's right to self-determination, the ERC (23.7%), CiU (21.9%), Green Socialists ICV (10.3%) and the alternative left party Podemos (4.7%), has now reached 61% of the vote, with a majority of left-wing parties within this block. Moreover, the ERC's victory has been achieved by overtaking the CiU, the governing party in Catalonia, which can now ask the left-wing independence and republic supporters for a further engagement.

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