Countdown to Spain’s 3rd Election in 1 Year

Countdown to Spain’s 3rd Election in 1 YearCountdown to Spain’s 3rd Election in 1 Year

The clock starts ticking on Wednesday, August 31, towards what could be Spain's third national election in a year when acting Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy faces a confidence vote in parliament for a second term in office.

Spain has been without a functioning government since inconclusive elections in December and June failed to hand a convincing mandate to any political party. So far, party leaders have been unable to agree on forming a coalition. The eight-month political deadlock has delayed investments in infrastructure such as roads and rail and put high-ranking government appointments on hold, leaving some Spanish embassies without an ambassador, Reuters reported.

Rajoy's center-right People's Party (PP) won the most votes in June's election but lacks the majority it needs to win the vote even with support from centrists Ciudadanos (Citizens), Spain's fourth-biggest party.

The opposition Socialists have refused to back Rajoy or smooth the way to a PP-led minority government by abstaining in a second confidence vote, which will be held on Friday if Wednesday's ballot fails. In the second vote a simple majority will suffice to put Rajoy back in power.