Catalonia’s Separatists Losing Support Before Vote, Poll Shows

Catalan President Artur Mas is losing support for his plan to force independence from Spain, according to a regional-government poll released Friday.

Mas’s party, CiU, would win up to 32 seats if a regional election was held today, while his ally Oriol Junqueras’s Esquerra Republicana would get 31 seats, according to survey by the Catalan government pollster, Centre d’Estudis d’Opinio. That’s four fewer than the two parties had in a similar poll in December and falls short of the 68 needed for a majority in the regional parliament.

Catalonia is scheduled to hold elections on Sept. 27 and Mas says that if pro-secession parties win a majority he’ll begin the process of separating from Spain, even though the government in Madrid says such a move would be illegal.

CUP, an anarchist party that backed independence in November’s disputed referendum, would get up 11 seats, so could help form a separatist majority, the poll showed. CUP has so far declined to endorse the road map to independence agreed between Mas and Junqueras.

Ciudadanos, the largest unionist party in Catalonia, and the anti-austerity party Podemos would get enough support for up to 17 seats each while Spanish Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy’s People’s Party would control 14 seats and Socialists would obtain 12 seats.

The poll is based on 2,000 interviews conducted between Feb. 9 and March 2 and the margin of error is 2.69 percentage points.

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