No Portuguese party would win outright majority, polls show

Reuters News
Posted: May 15, 2015 1:02 PM

LISBON (Reuters) - None of the main parties in Portugal would win an outright parliament majority in elections due to take place this autumn, opinion polls showed.

The polls were the first since the country's ruling coalition parties agreed an alliance for the coming election.

A survey by Eurosondagem pollsters, published on Friday, showed the opposition Socialists gaining with 38.1 percent, up from 37.5 percent last month. The two coalition parties fell 1.1 points from April to 33.6 percent.

But according to a survey by Aximage, published on Thursday, the coalition rose to 37.2 percent from 36.5 percent, while the Socialists also rose, by 0.4 percentage points to 37.3 percent.

The Expresso newspaper, which published the poll by Eurosondagem, said projections showed the Socialists winning just 103 seats in the 230-seat parliament.

Both Prime Minister Pedro Passos Coelho, the leader of the Social Democrats, and Socialist leader Antonio Costa have ruled out a centrist coalition and promised to fight for an outright majority.

But some analysts say the two may change their minds, to avoid a political crisis that could undermine Portugal's recovery from a debt crisis.

Portugal exited a European Union/International Monetary Fund bailout last year, and its economy is growing again after years of austerity and a long recession. It has not seen the kind of mass support for a radical anti-bailout party that Greece and Spain have.

Leaving the Left
John Stossel

The Socialists and the ruling coalition have promised to continue budget consolidation if they win, but Socialists argue this can be achieved without austerity, via economic growth.

Eurosondagem surveyed 1,021 people between May 7 and 12. Aximage polls around 600 people.

(Reporting By Andrei Khalip, Editing by Axel Bugge, Larry King)