Spain's political crisis has deepened, after the country's acting prime minister, Mariano Rajoy, lost a parliamentary bid for a second term in office. "84 times no," daily newspaper La Razón wrote on its front page, referring to the socialists who refused to back Rajoy's attempt to stay in power.
The leader of the opposition, Pedro Sánchez, had made clear that his party, the Spanish Socialist Workers' Party (PSOE), would not endorse their longtime rival.
"Spain needs a government, not a bad government," Sánchez stated during the debate on Rajoy's appointment on Tuesday.
Rajoy failed to reach a majority of at least 176 votes in parliament, securing only the votes of lawmakers from his People's party (PP), with the backing of 33 others. But he could still become prime minister in a second vote on Friday if he manages to pull off a majority vote, although it will require one party or more to abstain.
Spain has spent eight months in a political deadlock with the latest setback likely to dampen the country's economic recovery.