How homonationalism gave way to a new wave of international anti-LGBTQ persecution
Not quite a sigh of relief for LGBTQ people in Spain, but at least not the rapid exhalation from a punch in the gut either: in last month’s general election a much-feared political victory by Vox, the nation’s homegrown iteration of the continent-wide fascist resurgence, failed to materialise. Under the Spanish electoral system, a party has to win a majority of seats to form a government, and to select a new Prime Minister. Failing to win an outright majority, they can also form a coalition with a smaller party (or parties), negotiate cabinet positions and policy redlines with those parties, and use that coalition to form a majority. This coalition-building has been the norm since 2015, when the Spanish system’s domination by two parties, PSOE (Spanish Socialist Workers’ Party, a centre-left party) and PP (People’s Party, a Christian Democratic party) broke down, leading to almost a year of horse trading as both parties struggled to form a government which would take.
This situation can turn small parties into kingmakers. Since the current Prime Minister, PSOE’s Pedro Sánchez, called a snap election earlier this year, polls have been suggesting that PP would be forming the next government with the help of one of the many newer parties that have taken advantage of this new pluralism in Spanish politics. While PP consistently lead in the polls, it was unlikely they’d win enough deputies in congress to form a majority government. Instead, they would need the support of Vox, a far-right party barely a decade old. While it was expected their vote might drop a little, they’d still be vital to form a coalition when PP’s expected vote would put them within reach of forming a government. Within Spain’s LGBTQ communities, the prospect of a PP-Vox government has brewed an atmosphere of rage and fear.
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