Until last weekend Josep Borrell, currently Spain's acting foreign minister, had been the last person to head a Socialist party list in European elections when the party had won the biggest share of the vote. That was back in 2004 and last Sunday history repeated itself.
The PSOE, with Borrell once again heading the electoral list, won the 2019 European elections in Spain with 20 MEPs and 32 per cent of the vote. The Partido Popular (PP), winners last time, managed to hold on to second place with 12 seats in Brussels (20 per cent). They avoided being overtaken by Ciudadanos, who won seven seats and 12 per cent of the vote, as the PP had feared.
A coalition of left-wing regional parties from across Spain headed by Catalonia's Oriol Junqueras won three seats, and self-exiled former Catalan President, Carles Puigdemont, won two seats for Junts per Catalunya.
There was one seat for the alliance of the PNV (Basque National Party) and Coalición Canaria.
In European elections, Spain counts the whole country as one constituency under proportional representation. Turnout was up on last time at 64.25 per cent.
The Spanish result was one of the few bright spots in Europe for social-democratic parties on the night.