July 7, 2020

The Senate opens the legislature today with a PSOE without a guaranteed majority and with 20 political parties

The Senate of the XIV legislature is constituted on Tuesday with 265 parliamentarians, 208 of them elected by citizens on November 10 and another 57, appointed by the autonomous parliaments. In this new period, the PSOE will be the majority party but without a clear majority, which must negotiate in a chamber with 20 political parties.

The session will begin at 10 am and will follow the usual agenda: opening, organization of an old table, voting to elect the new Bureau and inauguration of the senators, again with the controversy of what formula some of them use them to swear or promise the charge. The members of Junts and ERC complied with the Constitution last May until the arrival of the Catalan Republic and the freedom of imprisoned politicians.

The Socialists, who will have 113 senators, this time correspond four of the seven seats of the Bureau and the PP, with 97 seats, the other three. The PSOE quota includes the presidency, for which he will propose Judge Pilar Llop, senator for Madrid, a specialist in gender violence. The socialists replace the Catalan Manuel Cruz, who came to office in May but will not repeat.

Despite being able to secure the four positions of the Bureau, the PSOE has decided to assign an armchair to the PNV as it did in the last legislature, with the difference that this time the Socialists do not have an absolute majority and must rely on the Basque group to have majority against the PP.

Along with Llop, for the PSOE, she will be first vice president of the Senate Cristina Narbona, who repeats in this way, and Francisco Francisco Fajardo canary will occupy a secretariat. In addition, the Socialists will support a PNV candidate for another secretariat, a position that could fall back on Imanol Landa.

The PP on the other hand will have for its 97 seats another three positions in the Table. The 'popular' will keep their two current representatives on this body, Pío García-Escudero (second vice president) and Rafael Hernando (one of the four secretariats). Next to them will enter Cristina Ayala, who was deputy spokesperson for the Popular Group with Ignacio Cosidó as spokesperson.


The PSOE will reach an absolute majority in the new Senate by adding the PNV (10) and ERC (13, which will be 15 because it will share a group with EH Bildu). The support of the Basques seems clearer than that of Esquerra, with which the Socialists negotiate an agreement for the investiture of Pedro Sánchez as President of the Government that will condition the support in Congress, but also in the Senate.

If this route fails, the PSOE counts on joining other parties for many daily affairs. Specifically, the two senators of United Podemos (of En Comú and Adelante Andalucía), those of Compromís, Más Madrid and Mès per Mallorca (3 together), that of Geroa Bai (1), Canary Coalition (1), the PAR (1), the PRC (1) and the Gomera Socialist Association (ASG, 1). There are ten in total and a good part of them PSOE partners in their autonomies.

Nor is Teruel Existe discarded, with two senators. Their position is a mystery except in the matters that have made them win at the polls: the fight against depopulation and the demand for investments for the province, where they want to fight. In the rest, they are open to consensus.

The rest of the chamber is made up of the UPN senator (elected in the Navarra Suma coalition), the three Senators of Vox, the five of Junts and the 9 of Citizens.


Once the Senate is constituted on Tuesday, the deadline to establish parliamentary groups will begin. PSOE, PP, ERC-Bildu and PNV have theirs insured, but the rest of the formations are obliged to understand each other and to borrow senators, a habitual practice in the Upper House. Achieving a group means having representation in all Senate bodies, spokespersons and shifts for intervention and initiative, as well as more economic resources and material resources.

The Regulation requires adding ten components and never lowering six, which opens the door when senators come and go to register a group and then leave for their home party. It is the case of Junts and Canary Coalition. Together they add six senators and with the help of other formations of the Mixed Group they have had in this legislature group, formula that they aspire to repeat.

So will Podemos, MÈS, Compromís and Más País, which have been together these months; adding now to Geroa Bai and with the help of the PSOE they can also have a group.

As for Citizens, it has 9 senators and is missing one to meet the requirements. The oranges have always been very critical of senators dancing from one party to another, they have refused to receive help in the last legislatures and also to lend it, as they did in the Catalan Parliament with the PP to form a group there.

From the Popular Group it has been assured that if Cs asks for support they will give it. The two parties are partners in the Navarra Suma coalition, along with UPN (1 senator). The exit of Citizens would have its advantages for this match, but also for the rest of those who would stay in the Mixed Group, who are also interested in reducing the number. This is Vox, Teruel Existe, ASG, PAR, PRC and UPN.

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