Portugal’s Political Divide: Failed Presidential Elections and Uncertain Future for New Prime Minister

Portugal’s Parliament Speaker Election Ends in Failure

In Portugal, the election for President of Parliament faced a third unsuccessful attempt on March 10th. This event highlighted the deep political divisions within the newly elected “Assembleia da República.” At the constitutive meeting in Lisbon, all candidates failed to secure the necessary absolute majority of 116 votes, even in the final round of voting. As a result, MPs will reconvene on Wednesday to try again, with parties being able to nominate new candidates.

This situation presents a challenging tone for the new Prime Minister of Portugal, Luis Montenegro, who leads the conservative alliance Democratic Alliance (AD). Montenegro’s candidate for President of Parliament came in second in the third vote with 88 votes, trailing behind Francisco Assis of the Socialist Party PS who received 90 votes. Despite winning the most votes in recent elections and leading a right-wing populist party Chega with over 50 seats, Montenegro only holds 80 out of 230 seats in parliament. The Socialists lost 42 seats and now have 78 MPs.

Given that a “grand coalition” between conservatives and socialists is unlikely due to deep ideological differences and Montenegro’s refusal to collaborate with Chega, governing is expected to be challenging. If Montenegro fails to secure a majority in an upcoming parliamentary vote on his government program, another election may be necessary. As Montenegro prepares to present his cabinet on Thursday and officially takes office on April 2nd, Portugal’s political landscape remains uncertain.

In Portugal, the election for President of Parliament faced a third unsuccessful attempt on March 10th. This event highlighted the deep political divisions within the newly elected “Assembleia da República.” At the constitutive meeting in Lisbon, all candidates failed to secure the necessary absolute majority of 116 votes, even in the final round of voting.…

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