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PP and Cs vie for possible control of the Junta, but who would be in charge is unclear

Moreno celebrates with Elías Bendodo (r) on Sunday.
Moreno celebrates with Elías Bendodo (r) on Sunday. / EP
  • Both parties are happy to to share power with each other but disagree which one should lead, although the support of Vox is needed to get there

The election night delight of the Partido Popular (PP) at the decline of the PSOE's share of vote, and the possibility of grabbing power in a region they have longed to govern, masked the decline in their own vote in favour of Ciudadanos (C's) and Vox.

Nevertheless, the PP is still the second biggest party. Standing alongside the PP campaign director, Elías Bendodo, who is the leader of the Malaga Diputación provincial authority, the PP's Andalusian regional leader, Juanma Moreno, also from Malaga, immediately announced that he would put his own name forward to be president of the Seville-based Junta de Andalucía.

The result was also a boost for the new PP national leader, Pablo Casado, who immediately started seeking an investiture alliance for Andalucía with Ciudadanos and controversially Vox. The parties' MPs' support would be needed to see Moreno as regional president.

Potential partners, Vox, want to abolish regional parliaments and change the constitution. Faced with criticism over possibly having to rely on their new regional MPs' support, Pablo Casado said this week, "They [Vox] will have to decide if they take a passive role and abstain, or take an active role in government for four years." He added that his redline was no to reform of the constitution."

Bitter-sweet delight from C's

Ciudadanos (C's), which saw a doubling of its support to bring it close to the PP, was confident enough on Sunday night to say it should lead a new Junta government instead. Both its regional leader, Juan Marín, and national leader, Albert Rivera, said that as it was the party that had grown the most and the least affected by corruption, it had the right to form a regional government.

Marín had ruled out supporting the PSOE into power again, leaving him to openly favour going into coalition with the PP, but as the senior partner. Any role for Vox in giving support to this plan was debated this week, amid fears that accepting far-right support could alienate C's' centrist base of voters.