Pedro Sanchez has arrived in Spain's parliament, set to become the country's new prime minister after his socialist party yesterday secured enough votes to topple Mariano Rajoy in a confidence vote over a corruption case.
The Socialists tabled the no-confidence vote last week after 29 former members of the ruling Popular Party...
Rajoy became Spain's first sitting prime minister to give evidence in a trial when he was called as a witness past year, prompting calls for him to resign.
In parliament, the Basque Nationalist Party (PNV) said its five lawmakers would vote against Rajoy, who was conspicuously absent from the lower house after earlier launching a staunch defence against the motion, scheduled for Friday.
Anti-establishment parties in Rome revived coalition plans on Thursday, ending three months of turmoil by announcing a government that, by contrast, says it will increase spending and challenge European Union fiscal rules.
Mr Sanchez has already committed to respecting a budget passed by Mr Rajoy.
Leftist Podemos, which will offer parliamentary support to Sanchez's government, is also unlikely to gain big influence over the new Prime Minister, who is keen to differentiate his Socialist party from its anti-austerity ally and win back centrist voters.
Historic vote: Rajoy's defeat marks the first time a Spanish premier has lost a no-confidence vote since the transition to democracy in Spain after the death of dictator Francisco Franco in 1975. His party has also faced continued allegations of corruption over the past years, culminating in the recent scandal.
What is Rajoy's party accused of? .
Rajoy's position had become increasingly untenable, undermined by his status as head of a corruption-tinged minority government as well as a divisive independence drive in the wealthy region of Catalonia.
German prosecutors made a court application for the extradition to Spain of the leader of the independence movement, former regional president Carles Puigdemont, on charges linked to his role in the campaign, they said on Friday in Berlin.