Dejected Díaz vows to fight on to try to keep power and stop the rise of the far-right

Susana Díaz and supporters show serious faces in Seville on Sunday night.
Susana Díaz and supporters show serious faces in Seville on Sunday night. / EFE
  • With little self-criticism, the current Junta leader pleads for "constitutional parties" to work together, pointing out that the PSOE is still the biggest party in the region

Susana Díaz, regional PSOE leader and current acting president of the Junta de Andalucía, was clearly shocked by the election result on Sunday night.

Speaking to supporters at her party's campaign base in Seville, she claimed little personal responsibility for the fall-off in its share of vote, to its lowest levels ever in the region, affected in part by a low turnout in PSOE strongholds. Her main fire was directed at the rise of the far-right Vox and she vowed to do everything to resist that party's progress.

Díaz pleaded with the other parties to "act responsibly" and not to let Vox, an anti-constitutional party, be the kingmaker in a coalition to oust the PSOE, but instead to join her in defending the "democratic values of the Constitution". She stressed that she was still leader of the largest party in Andalucía and had the right to try to form the next regional government.

The poor PSOE result was also a blow to the central government of Prime Minister Pedro Sánchez, as it was the first test of his performance since the PSOE took control in Madrid earlier this year.

Earlier this week, national party bosses were lukewarm in giving support for Díaz, suggesting that factors unique to Andalucía had played a part in the election.

However, later they were quick to clarify their position, saying that Díaz continued to enjoy the support of Pedro Sánchez. National secretary, José Luis Ábalos, said that, "it doesn't make sense to open an internal [battle] front at the moment."