Spain′s leftist Podemos party re-elects Iglesias as leader | News | DW | 12.02.2017
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Spain's leftist Podemos party re-elects Iglesias as leader

Pablo Iglesias has been re-elected as party chief of Podemos, with second-in-command Inigo Errejon failing in his bid to redirect the left-wing party toward the center. The party has been plagued by internal fighting.

Members of the Spanish anti-establishment party Podemos on Sunday re-elected its founder Pablo Iglesias as Podemos' secretary-general at the party's congress, Vistalegre II, in Madrid.

He will head the leadership council of the party, which currently sits third in the Spanish National Congress.

Iglesias defeated rival candidate Juan Moreno Yagüe,  gaining 89 percent of around 155,000 votes. The election was open to Podemos' 450,000 members. Iglesias' political document outlining party strategy also received a majority of votes.

The results are seen as a decisive victory for Iglesias over his political secretary and rival Inigo Errejon, who had advocated taking the party in a more mainstream direction.

The results will also reshape the composition of the party's leadership council, which will now include 37 advisers for Iglesias and 23 for Errejon. Two advisers will go to the anticapitalist sector.

Previous to the vote, the division between Errejon and Iglesias supporters had been roughly equal. However, Sunday's results indicate that 59.85 percent voted for the council list of hardline leftist Iglesias in comparison to the 37.10 percent who supported the list of the more moderately inclined Errejon.

What remains unknown is whether the across-the-board votes in favor of Iglesias will put to end the political infighting that has roiled Podemos.

cmb/tj (EFE, dpa)