Spanish socialist activists have given a massive thumbs down to their leaders for failing to mount an effective opposition to the right-wing Government of Mariano Rajoy that is planning to serve up yet another dose of lethal austerity medicine to the general population.
A survey of 1,162 activists found that 78% were unhappy with the party’s opposition performance and 66% thought the party was failing to defend the interest of citizens. They want to see the party, led by Alfredo Pérez Rubalcaba, join the rebellion in the streets.
They also indicated a desire for a new leadership with the most popular candidate, with 21% backing, the young leader of the socialists in parliament Eduardo Madina. Rubalcaba, , a member of the old guard, scored very poorly while his most outspoken internal critic to date, Tomas Gomez from the Madrid federation, was close behind Madina with 18% backing. Carme Chacón, who lost out to Rubalcaba in the February internal elections to replace former prime minister José Luis Rodríguez Zapatero, is the second most popular among the activists.
A new leader could be elected at the Socialist congress in Seville in seven months’ time.
A desire for more internal party democracy was also expressed.