Spain's Sanchez Says Rajoy Must Fail Before He Discusses Leading

  • Sanchez confident he'll form alternative if Rajoy loses vote
  • Podemos offered government pact with Iglesias as Deputy PM

Socialist leader Pedro Sanchez said he’ll wait for Acting Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy to fail in his attempt to form an administration before making his own bid to govern Spain by reaching out to other parties including Podemos.

“We are going to wait for Rajoy, and if he fails, the Socialist Party will do what it has to do: create a progressive majority,” Sanchez said at a news conference after a meeting with King Felipe VI. “It’s important in a democratic state to respect the timing of things.”

Podemos leader Pablo Iglesias turned up on the heat on Sanchez on Friday by offering to back a progressive government led by the Socialists. Iglesias’s offer to be Sanchez’s deputy in a government dedicated to rolling back the austerity policies of acting Prime Minister may signal a way out of a political impasse caused by inconclusive elections on Dec. 20.

Sanchez was meeting the king himself as Iglesias made his announcement. Iglesias set out his proposal to the king without warning the Socialists, who’ve been maneuvering for Rajoy to face a confidence vote in parliament before they start their own efforts to govern.

The Socialists are facing internal tensions between lawmakers in favor of forming a government with Podemos and those who see it as a risky move as the Socialist party struggles to maintain its dominant position on the left of the political spectrum.

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