On Sunday, Spain holds general elections where bipartisanship seems to have vanished after Ciudadanos (also called Citizens or the Podemos of the right) and Podemos presence at the polls:
Dave Kellaway, from Hackney Left Unity, held a public meeting about Podemos (We Can) on Wednesday at the Council House, in Birmingham. Kellaway has been studying this party and its foundation with the Indignados movement.
An example of this communication, says Kellaway, is Podemos’ election campaign video #AlgoPasaConMaría:
With its anti-austerity programme, Podemos is seen as a reference to the leftist parties in the UK. Led by Pablo Iglesias, it could become the third party in Spain, beating the PSOE (socialist party).
Kellaway suggests that Podemos support is getting votes from the PSOE electorate or the IU (Izquierda Unida), Spanish Communist party-led coalition:
Even thought the PP (People’s Party) seems to win the elections, according to the latest surveys Podemos could win between 17 and 19% of the votes.
However, Catalonia’s independence would still be a potential discussion with different points of view from Ciudadanos and Podemos.
“It could be a real crisis and constitutional discussion. Catalonia is the point of the crisis.”
Four phases of Podemos
Kellaway summarises Pablo Iglesias’ party through four phases:
- Creation of the party after the Indignados movement. European Elections on May 2014 with 5 members.
- Centralise the party and approach people by severals interviews on the TV: “It is the great medium of our time.”
- Attacks on the media due to the Greek situation.
- Coalitions with other national forces such as Barcelona en Comú with Ada Colau.
“Without Indignados Podemos would never exist, but it’s not a simple replication.”
“The dream of Pablo Iglesias being transversal is completely wrong.”
Even though Podemos is not likely to win the elections, its presence shows “democratic demands”. It is dangerous to overestimate Iglesias’ party. With more than one-year life, this party was created by students and it seems to target young voters’ attention who are discontented with “politicians’ corruption”: