Spain's king picks socialist chief to try to form government

Reuters News
Posted: Feb 02, 2016 2:22 PM

MADRID (Reuters) - Spain's King Felipe has nominated socialist chief Pedro Sanchez to lead talks with political parties to form a government and seek the confidence of parliament, the speaker of the lower house Patxi Lopez announced on Tuesday.

Speaking after a brief meeting with the king, Lopez said Sanchez would need at least three weeks, possibly a month, before a first parliamentary confidence vote can be organized.

Under Spain's constitution, a two-month deadline for the formation of a government comes into effect once this first vote takes place. If that deadline expires a new national election is called.

(Reporting by Julien Toyer; Editing by Alison Williams)