Zapatero fails to be elected premier in first round
Spanish leader fails to gather sufficient support in initial voting.9 April 2008
MADRID - Spanish leader Jose Luis Rodriguez Zapatero has failed to garner sufficient support to form a new government in a parliamentary vote. A second round will be held later in the week and his victory then is all but assured.
Zapatero received the votes of 168 deputies in the 350-seat lower house, just short of an absolute majority. In Friday's second round, only a simple majority will be needed for him to secure a second, four-year term as prime minister.
Wednesday's result was expected as most opposition parties had said they would withhold support or vote against the Socialist leader in the first round of voting.
Zapatero's Socialists are the largest party in parliament with 169 seats following the 9 March elections
[AP / Expatica]