Spanish PM Mariano Rajoy re-elected as Popular Party leader

AP News
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Posted: Feb 12, 2017 6:01 AM

MADRID (AP) — Spanish Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy has been re-elected as the leader of the conservative Popular Party for a fourth term.

The 61-year-old Rajoy ran unopposed and won Saturday night with 95% of the vote at the party congress in Madrid.

Rajoy thanked party members, saying "it's an honor because I have spent all my life in this party."

Rajoy maintained most of the party's leadership, including Maria Dolores de Cospedal, Spain's minister of defense, as the party's second-in-command.

Rajoy has been Spanish prime minister since 2011, when he took power during a severe economic recession. He is credited with helping Spain avoid an international bailout.

Rajoy has led a minority government since October when he won support from other parties to end 10 months of deadlock following two indecisive elections.