Spanish political reform referendum, 1976

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A referendum was held in Spain on 15 December 1976 to approve the Political Reform Act of 1977 which had been approved by the Spanish Parliament, The Cortes Generales. The question asked was "Do you approve of the Political Reform Bill? (Spanish: "¿Aprueba el Proyecto de Ley para la Reforma Política?") The final result was overwhelming support for the project with 97.4% of voters in favour on a turnout of 77.7%.[1]


The Political Reform Act (Spanish: Ley 1/1977 de 4 de enero) was the last of the Fundamental Laws of the Realm and was approved by the Cortes on 18 November 1976. Its aim was to move away from the dictatorship of the Franco era and turn Spain into a constitutional monarchy with a parliament system based on representative democracy. It had been drafted by Torcuato Fernández Miranda, then President of the Cortes, and supported by Prime Minister Adolfo Suárez and King Juan Carlos. The law provided for the legalisation of political parties and a democratic election to Constituent Cortes, a committee of which then drafted the Constitution.[2]


Spanish Political Reform Act of 1977
Do you approve of the Political Reform Bill?
Choice Votes  %
Referendum passed Yes 16,573,180 97.36
No 450,102 2.64
Valid votes 17,023,282 96.73
Invalid or blank votes 576,280 3.27
Total votes 17,599,562 100.00
Registered voters and turnout 22,644,290 77.72
Source: Ministerio del Interior de España

The yes vote ranged from 89.8% in Santander to 96.9% in Almería. The number of blank ballots exceeded 5% only in the three Basque provinces and the Basque province of Guipúzcoa was the only province in which the turnout (45.25%) was less than 50%.[3]


  1. ^ Nohlen, D & Stöver, P (2010) Elections in Europe: A data handbook, p1824 ISBN 978-3-8329-5609-7
  2. ^ 1978: Spain set to vote for democracy BBC News
  3. ^ Referendum results

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