Center-right coalition wins Madrid, far-left keeps Barcelona

June 15, 2019
FILE - This combination file photo shows Barcelona mayor Ada Colau, left, delivering a speech in Paris on Oct. 23, 2017, and Madrid mayor Manuela Carmena, right, presenting her new book on Aug. 28, 2015, in Buenos Aires, Argentina. The future of the left-wing mayors of Spain’s two biggest cities is being decided as political parties work against the clock to determine who will govern the country’s municipal governments. Cities across Spain have until Saturday, June 15, 2019, to choose mayors following May 26 elections. (AP Photo/File, Michel Euler, left photo, and Natacha Pisarenko, right photo.)

MADRID (AP) — A conservative has been sworn in as the new mayor of Madrid in the first major political shift enabled by the far-right’s gains in last month’s Spanish local and regional elections.

The Popular Party’s José Luis Martínez-Almeida replaces the far-left administration led by former judge Manuela Carmena. He will govern Madrid in coalition with the center-right Citizens’ party and with the backing of Vox’s national-populists.

Reliance on Vox for post-electoral pacts is earning Citizens strong criticism from within its own ranks and even from French President Emmanuel Macron.

In Barcelona, far-left mayor Ada Colau is set to be re-elected later Saturday, with the help of the Socialists and of a group led by former French Prime Minister Manuel Valls, who has refused to work with Vox.

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