PS wins elections and opens the door to a new ‘Geringonça’

  • Luís Alexandre
  • 7 October 2019

The socialist Party won the parliamentary elections but failed to achieve an absolute majority. António Costa revealed his willingness to create a new 'Geringonça' with the help of left-wing parties.

This Sunday, the Socialist Party (PS) won the legislative elections with 36.7% of the vote, electing 106 members for the Portuguese Parliament. In second place were the Social Democrats (PSD) with 27.9%, achieving 77 deputies.

In spite of the triumph, the party led by António Costa did not obtain enough votes to achieve the desired absolute majority. A fact that does not seem to frighten the current Prime Minister, because in his view a new ‘Gerigonça’ may be in his plans.

“The Portuguese want a government of the PS to govern with stability in the horizon of the legislature. The Portuguese liked the ‘Gerigonça’ and want the continuity of the current political solution, now with a stronger PS,” he said.

However, the big winner of the night was not the PS but the environmentalist party PAN, which reached 3.3%, going from one to four members in the parliament. In the final speech, after the figures were known, André Silva, leader of the PAN, was very satisfied with the result of the elections.

“Today we mark a great victory for PAN. We have quadrupled the number of mandates, we are the only parliamentary group in which men are in a minority. PAN has consolidated itself in the Portuguese political system, against the will of those who wanted to hinder our growth”, he says.

Left Bloc is the third most voted force and Communist Party falls

The last four years of the famous ‘Gerigonça’ helped the Left Bloc (BE) consolidate as the third political force in the country, getting 9.7% of the votes – which will allow the party to guarantee 19 seats in Parliament.

Speaking on national television, Catarina Costa, BE Leader, left the door open for a new agreement with the PS but guaranteed more harshness in the discussion of certain issues.

“PS has all the conditions to form a government and if it does not have an absolute majority and if it needs parliamentary support it has two options: seek a solution of stability, which assumes the continuity of the restitution of rights and income throughout the legislature, and this should be reflected in the Government program that it will present, or conduct negotiations year by year for each budget”, she said.

However, unlike the BE, the Communist Party (PCP) had a different fate. The PCP had 6.5% of the votes and thus lost representatives, going from 17 to 12 deputies.

In his speech to the supporters, Jerónimo Sousa, leader of the party, acknowledged the defeat and stressed that he could also support the socialists.

“Our party will contribute to the approval of measures that it considers positive and will combat all negative measures,” he expressed.

Right is the biggest loser of the night

As expected, the social democrats did not avoid the victory of the PS and, worse than that, lost deputies. PSD went from 84 to 77 members.

A defeat that Rui Rio, leader of the party, refused to accept saying that “the PSD did not achieve its main objective” but according to the circumstances “the result was positive”.

On the CDS side, the scenario couldn’t have been worse. The party obtained an overwhelming defeat with 4.3%, achieving only 5 deputies.

Due to the negative result, the leader Assunção Cristas announced that she will request the “convocation of the National Council of the People’s Party with a view to holding an early congress” and assured that she will not run again in view of the results tonight.

Three new parties will be represented in parliament

Ultimately, The Liberal Initiative (1.3%), the right wing Chega (1.3%) and left party Livre (1.1%) were the newest parties to make their debuts, each with one member in the parliament.

It should be noticed that the abstention stood at 45.5%, confirming a record for the time being. The results of the emigration circles still have to be ascertained.