Spanish Prime Minister Pedro Sanchez is playing a dangerous game. So far he has been successful but it could be said that he is walking a tight-rope. His Spanish Socialist Party (PSOE) has formed a coalition government with the far-left Podemos party.
So far he has managed to keep them on-side and everything appears to be rosy. But Podemos is pretty radical and many opposition parties claim that they shouldn’t be in government at all. But so far so good for Sanchez. But Podemos is not enough. To win a majority in parliament so that key legislation can be passed he also needs the support of other parties.
To get the green light for his coalition government from parliament he was forced to turn to the Republic Left Party of Cataluña, who are also pretty radical. They want independence for Catalonia and they have said that they will only support Sanchez’s budget plans if they get a referendum on independence. Sanchez has said that they will be no vote but he is prepared to hold talks with the pro-independence party.
The Spanish Prime Minister has some unusual bedfellows from a far left party born out of the anti-austerity movement to Catalan nationalists. To be fair to the Prime Minister he had little option; none of the other parties were willing to entertain a pact with the Socialists, who were the most voted party at the general election earlier this year. So far so good for Sanchez but the future is certainly uncertain.