THE CENTRIST Ciudadanos party announced on Tuesday that it will not be standing in Spain’s general election on July 23.

Prime Minister Pedro Sanchez made the snap call on Monday in the wake of disappointing regional and municipal election results where the socialist PSOE suffered big losses to the conservative Partido Popular(PP).

If it was a stuttering Sunday at the polls for the PSOE, it was a disastrous day for Ciudadanos who got trounced all round Spain, with many of its votes seemingly going to the PP.

The party’s national committee met on Tuesday and secretary-general, Adrian Vazquez, said that the ‘message of the election was very clear’.

“We have come to the conclusion that the Spanish do not see us as a good transformative alternative,” he proclaimed.

“It is not good news for us and the national committee has decided that we will not run in this election cycle as we prepare for the new political scenario.”

The decision does not mean the end for Ciudadanos who only got 1.35% of votes cast on Sunday.

Vazquez promised to have a ‘large meeting’ in July to start determining the future direction of the party.

It’s all a very far cry from the days of image-friendly Albert Rivera leading Ciudadanos into the April 2019 general election where the party came third with 57 seats in Congress – only nine seats behind the Partido Popular.

Rivera was seen as a possible king-maker and even a prime minister, but rejected overtures to do a deal with Pedro Sanchez who called a second election that year in November.

The outcome was dreadful for Ciudadanos who were reduced to a rump of just ten seats with Rivera announcing his resignation shortly afterwards.

In recent times, the party has been mired in disagreements over policy and the direction of its leadership.


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