A bad week for the once mighty Partido Popular in Spain and the Conservative Party in Britain. These two parties, which have been the driving force behind politics in both countries for the last decade, are now out in the cold, with few ideas on how to revive their fortunes. The centre-right Partido Popular, which had been the dominant party in Spain since the return of democracy, suffered a crushing defeat in last Sunday's general election, finishing a distant second to the Spanish Socialist Party. The Conservatives lost more than 1,000 council seats in the local elections in Britain, and the party of Brexit is braced for further turmoil as it clings to power.
The PP and the Conservatives are very different animals even though they are on the right of politics. But they have both made the same mistake; they have left the centre and moved further to the right. A big mistake. These days politics is about compromise and dialogue. Spain already has a far-right party, Vox, which took plenty of votes away from the PP, and if the European elections do take place, the party of Brexit will find themselves facing a big defeat at the hands of Nigel Farage's Brexit party.
The Partido Popular and the Conservatives are lost for two different reasons. The Conservatives staked their future on Brexit and failed miserably and the PP staked their claim as being the party of Spain and also failed. Both have to reinvent themselves but this will be impossible with their present leadership. Big shake-ups are needed because otherwise they both face going quietly into the night.