Power to the People's Party
Spain's conservative People's Party (PP), led by Mariano Rajoy, swept to a landslide victory during last weekend's general election which saw them win 186 of 350 seats in Spanish parliament, whilst the outgoing Socialists, led by Jose Zapatero, lost a third of their seats.
It means that the People's Party will be charged with handling the country's political and financial matters at a time that Rajoy himself describes as "the most delicate circumstances Spain has faced in 30 years."
A stagnant economy, huge debts and unemployment of over 20% (rising to over 50% if you want to talk about youth unemployment) makes this an unenviable challenge and before he has even been sworn into power (that will take place on the 20th December) the incoming Prime Minister has moved to quash undue optimism "There will be no miracles," he said after the elections. "We haven't promised any."
Worrying times for Spain, but with a parliamentary majority Rajoy will - for better or worse - be free to enforce whatever reforms he feels are necessary to rescue the country from financial gloom.