Pedro Sánchez, Spain’s political gambler 2023

Spain’s 51-year-old prime leader unexpectedly called an early general election in late July, weakened by five years in charge included the COVID-19 epidemic and the Ukraine war’s economic disaster.

After his Socialists and their allies suffered a significant defeat in Sunday’s municipal elections, Sánchez made a hazardous bet, which experts said was a characteristic of his career. The vote had been widely expected by year’s end.

“The alternative was six months of governmental bloodletting,” said Barcelona Autonomous University political scientist Oriol Bartomeus. “He gambled everything. “Pedro Sánchez does that,” he told AFP.

Paloma Román, a political scientist at Madrid’s Complutense University, calls it a “strategic calculation” to stay for two months and develop. “For Socialists, it’s the lesser of two evils… She thought it would have been worse if they had waited until the year’s conclusion.

Write-off recovers

Sánchez, a leap-year baby born in Madrid on February 29, 1972, was raised in a wealthy home by an entrepreneur father and a civil servant mother.

Before earning a doctorate from a private Spanish institution, he studied economics.

Sánchez, elected party leader in 2014, was written off after leading the Socialists to their worst election setbacks in 2015 and 2016.

Sánchez won a primary in May 2017 following a cross-country campaign in his 2005 Peugeot.

After a daring no-confidence vote against Mariano Rajoy, he became PM in June 2018.

Bartomeus stated, “He is a politician who often makes these decisions.” “It’s mostly worked for him… however things are more complex now,” he said, noting Sánchez had been weakened by his time in office.

Tenacious and stubborn

This telegenic politician, who runs and towers over his opponents at 1.9 metres (6 foot 2 inches), is tough and persistent.

He has had to balance power for five years.

He called early elections in February 2019 after the shaky alliance of left-wing groupings and pro-independence Basque and Catalan parties that had propelled him to the government collapsed.

Sánchez called a second election later that year since his Socialists won but did not have a majority.

Despite his party’s gnashing of teeth, Sánchez has stayed in power despite his coalition’s minority in parliament.

He oversaw a cabinet with the most women and enacted several left-wing changes.

Sánchez, married with two teenage kids, is the only Spanish premier to speak English fluently since democracy returned in the 1970s.

He released his memoirs, “Resistance Manual,” in February 2019.

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