Connect to share and comment

Spain regional elections: Exit polls show Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy won vote in Galicia

Exit polls show Spain Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy won the vote in his home province of Galicia today, marking a key victory in regional elections.

Spain regional electionsEnlarge
A woman votes with her daughter at a polling station in Vigo during the Galician regional election today. (AFP/Getty Images)

Embattled Spanish Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy has avoided political humiliation after his center-right party retained power in his home province of Galicia, the Agence France-Presse reported today.

Exit polls show the ruling People’s Party maintained its majority in the northwestern region, the BBC reported.

In the other regional election held this weekend, the Basque nationalist party Partido Nacionalista Vasco looked set to win 24-27 seats in Basque Country, putting it ahead of its rivals, Reuters reported, citing exit polls showed. 

The BBC said the result in the Basque Country would likely fuel calls for independence.

The Associated Press said the weekend elections – the first held since Rajoy’s party introduced tough austerity measures 11 months ago – were seen as a popular test of the government’s spending cuts, tax hikes and labor reforms that have led to protests across the country.

Spain, which is suffering its second recession in three years and has near 25 percent unemployment, has implemented the tough measures in order to avoid an international bailout.

More from GlobalPost: Standard & Poor's cuts Spain credit rating to near junk status
 

http://www.globalpost.com/dispatch/news/regions/europe/spain/121021/spain-regional-elections-exit-polls-prime-minister-mariano-rajoy-galicia