Socialist Party Wins in Spain

But ruling party will fall short of majority in parliament
By Neal Colgrass,  Newser Staff
Posted Mar 9, 2008 4:25 PM CDT
Spain's Prime Minister Jose Luis Rodriguez Zapatero gestures after winning Spain's general elections at the Socialist's party headquarter in Madrid, on Sunday, March 9, 2008. (AP Photo/Victor R. Caivano)   (Associated Press)
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(Newser) – Spain's Socialist Party overcame a sputtering economy and the murder of a former councilor to win today's national election, the BBC reports. "The Spanish people have spoken clearly and have decided to open a new period without tension, without confrontation," Prime Minister Jose Luis Rodriguez Zapatero told a crowd of supporters in Madrid.

With 92% of votes tallied, the Socialists are projected to win 168 seats, compared to the conservative Popular Party's 154. But the Socialist Party failed to win a parliamentary majority and may need to re-form an uneasy union with a smaller, nationalist party.  PP's campaign chief welcomed today's result, saying "the number of votes we have won has risen considerably from 2004, as has the number of seats."