Spanish general election, 2004
|This article is outdated. (December 2010)|
|Most voted party in each autonomous community and province. Every province is a multi-member district for the Congress.|
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politics and government of
The 2004 Spanish general election was held on Sunday, 14 March, to elect the 8th Cortes Generales of the Kingdom of Spain. At stake were all 350 seats to the Congress of Deputies and 208 of 259 seats to the Senate.
The governing People's Party (PP) was led into the campaign by Mariano Rajoy, successor to outgoing Prime Minister José María Aznar. The election result took many by surprise, as polling leading up to the day of the election had shown the People's Party under leader Rajoy to be consistently ahead. The electoral outcome was heavily influenced by the 11 March 2004 Madrid train bombings and the PP government's handling of the attacks (maintaining the theory of ETA's responsibility even when evidence pointed to Islamist extremist groups), which resulted in large demonstrations on the days before the election.
The day after the election, Zapatero announced his intention to form a minority PSOE government, without a coalition, saying in a radio interview: "the implicit mandate of the people is for us to form a minority government negotiating accords on each issue with other parliamentary groups". Two minor left-wing parties, Republican Left of Catalonia (ERC) and IU, immediately announced their intention to support Zapatero's government. On April 16, 2004, Zapatero got the approval of the outright majority of the new Congress, with 183 out of 350 members voting for him, and became the Prime Minister of Spain the next day.
Voting is on the basis of universal suffrage in a secret ballot. The Congress of Deputies 350 members are elected in 50 multi-member districts using the D'Hondt method and a closed-list proportional representation. Ceuta and Melilla elect one member each using plurality voting. Each district is entitled to an initial minimum of two seats, with the remaining 248 seats being allocated among the 50 provinces in proportion to their populations. Only lists polling above 3% of the total vote in each district (which includes blank ballots—for none of the above) are entitled to enter the seat distribution. Under articles 12 and 68 of the Constitution, the minimum voting age is 18.
Elections to the Senate take place under a limited vote system. Each of the 47 peninsular districts (the provinces) is assigned 4 seats. In Baleares and Canarias, districts are the islands themselves, with the larger — Mallorca, Gran Canaria, and Tenerife — being assigned 3 seats each, and the smaller — Menorca, Ibiza-Formentera, Fuerteventura, Gomera, Hierro, Lanzarote and La Palma — one each. Ceuta and Melilla are assigned 2 seats each, for a total of 208 directly elected seats. In districts electing 4 seats, electors may vote for up to 3 candidates; in those with 2 or 3 seats, for up to 2 candidates; and for 1 candidate in single member constituencies. Electors vote for individual candidates: those attaining the largest number of votes in each district are elected for a 4-year term of office.
In addition, the legislative assemblies of the self-governing or autonomous communities into which the provinces of Spain are grouped are entitled to appoint at least one senator each, as well as one senator for every million inhabitants, adding up a variable number of appointed seats to the directly-elected 208 senators.
Under Article 68 of the Spanish constitution, the boundaries of the electoral districts must be the same as the provinces of Spain and, under Article 141, this can only be altered with the approval of Congress.
Dual membership of both chambers of the Cortes or of the Cortes and regional assemblies is prohibited, meaning that candidates must resign from regional assemblies if elected. Active judges, magistrates, public defenders, serving military personnel, active police officers and members of constitutional and electoral tribunals are also ineligible, as well as CEOs or equivalent leaders of state monopolies and public bodies, such as the Spanish state broadcaster RTVE. Additionally, under the Political Parties Law, June 2002, parties and individual candidates may be prevented from standing by the Spanish Supreme Court (Tribunal Supremo), if they are judicially perceived to discriminate against people on the basis of ideology, religion, beliefs, nationality, race, gender or sexual orientation, foment or organise violence as a means of achieving political objectives or support or compliment the actions of "terrorist organisations".
- Presenting candidates
Parties and coalitions of different parties which have registered with the Electoral Commission can present lists of candidates. Groups of electors which have not registered with the commission can also present lists, provided that they obtain the signatures of 1% of registered electors in a particular district.
Congress of Deputies
|Spanish Socialist Workers' Party (PSOE)||11,026,163||42.59||+8.43||164||+39|
|People's Party (PP)||9,763,144||37.71||−6.81||148||−35|
|United Left (IU)||1,284,081||4.96||−0.49||5||−3|
|Convergence and Union (CiU)||835,471||3.23||−0.96||10||−5|
|Republican Left of Catalonia (ERC)||652,196||2.52||+1.68||8||+7|
|Basque Nationalist Party (EAJ-PNV)||420,980||1.63||+0.10||7||±0|
|Canarian Coalition (CC)||235,221||0.91||−0.16||3||−1|
|Galician Nationalist Bloc (BNG)||208,688||0.81||−0.51||2||−1|
|Andalusian Party (PA)||181,868||0.70||−0.19||0||−1|
|Aragonese Union (CHA)||94,252||0.36||+0.03||1||±0|
|Basque Solidarity (EA)||80,905||0.31||−0.12||1||±0|
|Yes to Navarre (Na-Bai)||61,045||0.24||New||1||+1|
|Valencian Nationalist Bloc-Green Left (BNV-EV)||40,759||0.16||−0.09||0||±0|
|Nationalist Agreement (PSM-EN,EU,EV,ER)||40,289||0.16||+0.06||0||±0|
|Citizens for Blank Votes (CenB)||40,208||0.26||New||0||±0|
|The Greens-Ecopacifists (LV-E)||37,499||0.14||+0.04||0||±0|
|Aragonese Party (PAR)||36,540||0.14||−0.03||0||±0|
|Democratic and Social Centre (CDS)||34,101||0.13||+0.03||0||±0|
|The Greens-The Ecologist Alternative (EV-AE)||30,528||0.12||New||0||±0|
|Andalusian Socialist Party (PSA)||24,127||0.09||New||0||±0|
|Humanist Party (PH)||21,758||0.08||±0.00||0||±0|
|The Greens of the Madrid Community (LVCM)||19,600||0.08||−0.01||0||±0|
|Republican Left (IR)||16,993||0.07||New||0||±0|
|Cannabis Party for Legalisation and Normalisation (PCLyN)||16,918||0.07||New||0||±0|
|Family and Life Party (PFyL)||16,699||0.06||New||0||±0|
|National Democracy (DN)||15,180||0.06||+0.02||0||±0|
|Leonese People's Union (UPL)||14,160||0.05||−0.13||0||±0|
|Communist Party of the Peoples of Spain (PCPE)||12,979||0.05||−0.01||0||±0|
|The Greens-Green Group (LV-GV)||12,749||0.05||−0.04||0||±0|
|Spanish Phalanx (FE-JONS)||12,266||0.05||+0.02||0||±0|
|Majorcan Union (UM)||10,558||0.04||±0.00||0||±0|
|The Phalanx (FE)||10,311||0.04||−0.02||0||±0|
|Communal Land-Castilian Nationalist Party (TC-PNC)||8,866||0.03||−0.05||0||±0|
|Internationalist Socialist Workers' Party (POSI)||8,003||0.03||−0.02||0||±0|
|The Greens of the Region of Murcia (LVRM)||7,074||0.03||New||0||±0|
|Republican Social Movement (MSR)||6,768||0.03||New||0||±0|
|Spanish Democratic Party (PADE)||5,677||0.02||−0.02||0||±0|
|Democrats Convergence of Navarre (CDN)||5,573||0.02||−0.02||0||±0|
|The Greens of Asturias (Verdes)||5,013||0.02||New||0||±0|
|Authentic Phalanx (FA)||4,589||0.02||New||0||±0|
|Asturianist Party (PAS)||4,292||0.02||−0.01||0||±0|
|Spain 2000 (E-2000)||4,231||0.02||−0.02||0||±0|
|Canarian Nationalist Party (PNC)||4,092||0.02||New||0||±0|
|United Extremadura (EU)||3,916||0.02||±0.00||0||±0|
|The Greens of Extremadura (LV)||3,133||0.01||New||0||±0|
|Freelance and Professionals' Party (AU.TO.NO.MO)||3,124||0.01||−0.01||0||±0|
|Initiative for the Development of Soria (I.DE.S)||2,934||0.01||New||0||±0|
|Andalusia Assembly (A)||2,930||0.01||±0.00||0||±0|
|Canarian People's Alternative (APCa)||2,715||0.01||New||0||±0|
|European Green Group (GVE)||2,662||0.01||New||0||±0|
|Independent Candidate - Castilla and Leon Party (PCL)||2,421||0.01||−0.01||0||±0|
|Unsubmissive Seats (Ei)||2,332||0.01||New||0||±0|
|Democratic Karma Party (PKD)||2,300||0.01||±0.00||0||±0|
|Galician Popular Front (FPG)||2,257||0.01||±0.00||0||±0|
|Galician Coalition (CG)||2,235||0.01||±0.00||0||±0|
|Alliance for the Development and Nature (ADN)||2,215||0.01||New||0||±0|
|Party for Precarious-Employed Workers (PTPRE)||2,115||0.01||New||0||±0|
|Valencian Kingdom Identity (IRV)||2,111||0.01||New||0||±0|
|Freelancers, Retired and Widows' Party (PAE)||2,082||0.01||±0.00||0||±0|
|Andecha Astur (AA)||1,970||0.01||±0.00||0||±0|
|Union of the Salamancan People (UPSa)||1,871||0.01||±0.00||0||±0|
|Carlist Party (PC)||1,813||0.01||±0.00||0||±0|
|Romantic Mutual Support Party (PMAR)||1,561||0.01||New||0||±0|
|Cantabrian Nationalist Council (CNC)||1,431||0.01||±0.00||0||±0|
|Regionalist Party of the Leonese Country (PREPAL)||1,322||0.01||±0.00||0||±0|
|Another Democracy is Possible (OtraDem)||1,302||0.01||±0.00||0||±0|
|Votes cast / turnout||26,155,436||75.66||+6.95|
|Source: Ministry of the Interior|
|People's Party (PP)||102||−25||126|
|Spanish Socialist Workers' Party (PSOE)||81||+28||96|
|Catalan Agreement of Progress (PSC-ERC-ICV)||12||+4||16|
|Basque Nationalist Party (EAJ-PNV)||6||±0||7|
|Convergence and Union (CiU)||4||−4||6|
|Canarian Coalition (CC)||3||−2||4|
|United Left (IU)||0||±0||2|
|Galician Nationalist Bloc (BNG)||0||±0||1|
|Aragonese Party (PAR)||0||±0||1|
|Votes cast / turnout||26,187,162||75.75||+6.92|
The Spanish Senate at the time of the 2004 election was composed by 208 directly-elected seats and 51 seats appointed by the regional parliaments of the autonomous communities when a new Parliament resulting from a regional election convenes. The appointment process of these seats depended on the political composition of those regional assemblies, and as such, it could change each time regional elections were held. A summary of the Senate composition evolution throughout the 2004−2008 legislature can be found in the table below, showing changes due to seat appointment variation as a result of regional elections.
|PSOE and allies||
|IU and allies||
|Source: Historia Electoral|
Results by region
Investiture voting for José Luis Rodríguez Zapatero (PSOE)
Absolute majority: 176/350
|Yes||PSOE (164), ERC (8), IU (5), CC (3), BNG (2), CHA (1)|
|Abstentions||CiU (10), PNV (7), EE (1), Na-Bai (1)|
|Source: Historia Electoral|
- "Rajoy asume el legado de Aznar tras ser ratificado como candidato del PP a La Moncloa". El País. 2003-09-02.
- Zapatero, inaugurated as Prime Minister with absolute majority - ABC (Spanish)
- "The Spanish Constitution of 1978".
- "General Aspects of the Electoral System".
- Electoral Law
- "Law governing electoral procedures". Retrieved 6 March 2011.
- "Law regarding registration of political parties". Retrieved 6 March 2011.
- Chari, Raj (November 2004). "The 2004 Spanish Election: Terrorism as a Catalyst for Change?". West European Politics 27 (5): 954–963. doi:10.1080/0140238042000283247.
- Spanish Interior Ministry elections website
- People's Party
- Spanish Socialist Workers' Party
- Convergence and Unity
- Republican Left of Catalonia
- United Left
- Basque Nationalist Party
- Canarian Coalition