SPAIN’S Prime Minister, Pedro Sanchez, won a nail-biting vote in Congress on Thursday to secure a massive spending package of €16 billion to boost the economy.
The measure got through by two votes, thanks to the Basque nationalist EH Bildu party who only declared their support at the last minute.
Sanchez scrapped a trip to Moldova and Poland to try to steer the bill through after the Catalan ERC party refused to vote for it because of the scandal concerning alleged government wire-tapping of separatist leaders.
The ERC refused to be placated by government denials and an offer for a formal investigation.
The bill announced in March includes lower electricity bills for millions of less well-off families, fuel subsidies, and caps on housing rent.
The PSOE-Podemos government operates without an overall majority which Sanchez will seek to change in December’s general election.
It has meant regular ‘horse-trading’ to get key bills onto the statute book.
In February, wide-ranging labour reforms were only passed by one vote, after a Partido Popular deputy mistakenly voted for the government motion.
The annual budget only got through when Sanchez made concessions to the ERC over the amount of Catalan language programming to be provided by streamer Netflix.