July 23, 2019 / 12:27 PM / a month ago

Spain's Sanchez loses first bid to get parliament backing to form govt

Spain's acting Prime Minister Pedro Sanchez gestures during the second day of the investiture debate at the Parliament in Madrid, Spain, July 23, 2019. REUTERS/Sergio Perez

MADRID (Reuters) - Spain’s Socialist leader Pedro Sanchez failed, as expected, on Tuesday in a first attempt to get parliament’s backing to form a government, leaving him two days to try and strike a deal with the far-left Podemos ahead of a second vote.

Sanchez, who has been acting prime minister since an inconclusive election in April, needed an absolute majority of at least 176 votes in his favour in the 350-seat house to be confirmed as prime minister but failed to get it.

On Thursday, Sanchez will only need a simple majority - more ‘yes’ than ‘no’ votes - and much can change until then.

Reporting by Belen Carreno, Emma Pinedo, Jose Elias Rodriguez; Eriting by Ingrid Melander; Editing by Andrei Khalip

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