MADRID, Sept. 25 (Xinhua) -- The leader of Spain's right-wing People's Party (PP), Alberto Nunez Feijoo, will open the investiture debate in the country's Congress of Deputies on Tuesday.
Feijoo was invited by King Felipe VI to attempt to form a government in the wake of the July 23 general election, despite it appearing obvious that he does not have the parliamentary support to win the vote.
Feijoo's PP won 137 votes in the election, more than the ruling Socialist Party (PSOE), which claimed 121 seats in the 350 seat Congress.
However, even with the support of the 33 deputies of the extreme right-wing Vox party and the single votes of the regional parties Navarrese People's Union (UPN) and Canarian Coalition, Feijoo can only count on 172 votes after failing to gain any support from Basque or Catalan nationalist parties, which refuse to support any political bloc that includes Vox.
This leaves Feijoo four votes short of the 176 he needs to gain an overall majority. The vote will be held on Wednesday (second day of the debate).
The PP leader will have a second chance to assume power on Friday, when a simple majority would be enough to make him prime minister.
With no chance of support from Basque and Catalan parties, Feijoo has made a call for support from Socialist deputies unhappy with the prospect of acting Prime Minister Pedro Sanchez granting an amnesty to Catalan leaders involved in the October 2017 independence referendum (which was ruled illegal by the Spanish Constitutional Court) and the subsequent declaration of independence.
The amnesty for the Catalan separatists is the price that Carles Puigdemont, leader of Junts per Catalunya who is currently in exile in Belgium, has asked for supporting Sanchez's bid to return to office.
Although Sanchez has not formally said he will make that concession, between 40,000 and 60,000 people gathered in the center of Madrid on Sunday in a demonstration organized by Feijoo's PP against a possible amnesty.
The event was attended by PP regional leaders and former Prime Ministers Mariano Rajoy and Jose Maria Aznar, with the crowd chanting slogans such as "Puigdemont to prison."
If Feijoo fails in his attempts to become prime minister this week, King Felipe VI is expected to invite Sanchez to attempt to form a government.