Spanish Prime Minister Jose Luis Rodriguez Zapatero dissolved parliament on Monday, but pledged more measures to tackle Spain's economic crisis before a November election that is expected to hand power to the conservative opposition.
Rodriguez Zapatero has called elections for Nov. 20, four months earlier than originally planned, in the hope that faint signs of an economic recovery could offset unpopularity after years of deep austerity measures in a country where one in five is unemployed.
However, since August, the worsening Euro zone crisis has forced the government to push through even more reforms as it tries to avoid a bailout like in Greece, Portugal and Ireland.
We'll continue to adopt measures if necessary, Rodriguez Zapatero told reporters after a cabinet meeting, given continued uncertainty in Greece, which remains in talks to avoid default.
Even though the Spanish parliament is officially dissolved, a permanent legislative committee can approve emergency measures in the event the Euro zone crisis takes a turn for the worse.
All public opinion polls indicate that the conservative Popular Party with Mariano Rajoy as leader is comfortably ahead of the Socialists by over ten points and will obtain an absolute majority in November 20, which coincidently is the anniversary of Spanish dictator Franco’s death.
The Gesop opinion poll for Catalonian daily El Periodico showed on Monday a total of 46% of voters intend to choose the PP and the Socialists trailing with 31.4%.
Rodriguez Zapatero several months ago announced he was stepping down from politics and the party’s is now campaigning with veteran Alfredo Perez Rubalcaba that has held several ministries, in difficult circumstance in different Socialist governments.
However there is also a growing tendency of voters disenchanted with the overall political system, spontaneously organized in the so called ‘indignados’ movement (indignant and angry) which have held demonstrations across Spain and occupied for several days Madrid’s main square.
Whether this movement canalized politically and follows on other European experiences such as in Sweden and most recently in Berlin, with the self identified Pirates party has yet to be seen.