|This article relies too much on references to primary sources. (September 2013)|
The Carlist Party (Spanish: Partido carlista, PC) is a Spanish political party that considers itself as a successor to the historical tradition of Carlism. The party was founded in 1969, although it remained illegal until 1977, following the death of the dictator Franco and the democratisation of Spain.
The general secretary of the party, since the year 2000, has been Evaristo Olcina. Its official publication is El Federal (since 1999, had been before IM). It has a political line of the alternative left, workers' self-management and federalism. It annually organises the acts of Montejurra. The Carlist Party holds a federal structure with the possibility of it forming sovereign Carlist parties in the associate nationalities in the Carlist Party. The youths of the different Carlist Parties and Carlist groups group together in the Carlist Youths.
The Party is known to be the "Left-Wing" of the Carlist Movement since the movement itself primarily belonged to the Right-wing spectrum such as Conservatism. It was also known for supporting Carlos Hugo over his brother for leading the Carlist movement.
The current organisation of the Carlist Party originates from the renovation of the ideology of the illegal Traditionalist Communion, which it was conceived during the 1950s and 1960s in a situation of illegality and prohibition imposed under the Francoism dictatorship to university and workers organisations of non-integrated Carlism (Group of Traditionalist Students, AET, the university, Traditionalist Worker’s Movement, MOT, the workers)into the Francoist only official party, with the support of Prince Xavier of Bourbon-Parma, even though the name of the Carlist Party did not materialize until the end of the 1960s.
Between 1970 and 1972 the Carlist Party organised Congresses of the Carlist People in Arbonne, in which it adopted a program for the ideological change of Carlism towards self-management socialism and the conversion of PC into a federal and democratic party of the masses, of class, which aspired to a socialist based monarchy in a pact between the dynasty and the people. The leader, Francesc Xavier, after suffering a serious automobile accident, conceded full powers to his son, Carlos Hugo, Duke of Parma, represented in Spain for José María de Zavala, to run the party and resigned on 20 April 1975.
According to party data, it contained around 25,000 members in 1977. In 1974 the Carlist Party went on to form an alliance, jointly with other forces of the opposition, from the Democratic Junta of Spain, until it ended in February 1975 to go on to form part of the Platform of Democratic Convergence which fused with the Junta in the Democratic Co-ordination in March 1976.
It was not able to participate in the first democratic elections of 1977 as it did not secure official recognition as a party on time. On the other hand, Prince Sixtus Henry of Bourbon-Parma, gave his support to remnant elements loyal to Francoism and with the collaboration of international far-right elements, he intended to organise an alternative Carlism to the Carlist Party and of the far-right, with strong support from New Force. After meeting some of his followers, they went to disrupt and intimidate in full force their opposition carrying out a terrorist aggression in the annual Carlist concentration of Montejurra in 1976, which ended with the death of two carline partisans of Carlos Hugo de Bourbon-Parma.
After supporting the 1978 Constitution, the Carlist Party suffered an internal crisis with a split into nationalist and left-wing parties. In the 1979 Spanish General Election, the PC obtained 50,552 votes (0.28%) and remained without parliamentary representation. The best results they obtained were in Navarre with 7.72% and the Basque Country with 0.65%. Because of the electoral infighting, its general secretary, Zavala, resigned, following the rest of the directors, between Carlos Carnicero and Josep Carles Clemente. In April of that year, it obtained 12,165 votes (4.79%) in the elections for the Parliament of Navarre, obtaining one representative (who did not attend the parliamentary sessions). In November 1979 Carlos Hugo renounced the presidency and in April 1980 he was lowered down in the party (even though he did not reject his dynastic rights to the Spanish Crown, the pretence from which he held since the abdication of his father in 1975), which happened to be testimonial in Spanish political life.
Mariano Zufia, general secretary of EKA- Basque Country Carlist Party, and Navarran member of parliament, assumed the general secretary of the PC. In 1986, he was one of the forces that gave origin to United Left, even though he walked out of the coalition in 1987. The PC missed to attend the majority of later electoral processes due funds and militancy failures. In 1989 it was one of the political Parties and signing Associations of the Pact of Estella, and in 2005 it campaigned against the European Constitution.