Minority Left Government in Portugal after Former Government Falls

As expected, the shaky Portuguese right-wing government led by a centre-right coalition fell, toppled by a left-wing alliance. Considered by many as a milestone, the collapse of the Portugal à Frente coalition paved the way for a left-led government headed by the alliance formed by the Socialist Party (PS), the Left Bloc and the Communist Party together with the Greens. After a motion of rejection to remove the government carried out by the left alliance, 123 MPs voted in favour of the motion and 107 MPs voted against it. The final decision was then in the taciturn president’s hands, Aníbal Cavaco Silva, who nominated the Socialist secretary-general António Costa as prime minister, after almost two weeks of political deadlock and pressure from the left.

After the October 4th general elections, Portugal suffered moments of political impasse, with the country divided between factions, one apparently in favour of paying higher taxes and the other composed of the anti-austerity citizen bloc. Overall, the Portuguese people do not believe in utopias, however, they feel as if there is nothing more to lose. After years of social rights suffering enormous blows, a shrinking middle class and increased poverty, an opportunity presented itself to the left to jointly rescue a country slowly rising from the ruins. Some call it a coup d’état, others a remarkable moment for Portugal. “We don’t have a coup here: we have democracy. Whoever lacks the votes in the national assembly cannot govern,” said Catarina Martins, the leader of the Left Bloc. While the president was disregarding his political role by nominating Costa, an online petition was circulating urging the president against nominating the left-wing coalition whilst the JSD, the youth sector from the Social Democratic Party (PSD), created an online flyer featuring Lenin, circulating misinformation by implying the country would be ruled by radicals. Later on, president of the CDS/PP, Paulo Portas, delivered a speech upholding the same line of thought, focusing on the sinister threat of a fragile Communist Party in Portugal. In turn, Antonio Costa declared that “the nervous reaction from the right would soon be replaced by a responsible stance.” Furthermore, the PS secretary-general reassured external creditors – ECB, EC and IMF – on the viability of his social reformist programme and Portugal’s obligations to its lenders.

What is the Left Compromise?

The joint position among the three parties is, however, the result of a positive transition amongst the vast differences and divergences of the various factions. The three leaders – António Costa, Catarina Martins and Jerónimo de Sousa – have agreed on substantial matters rather than focusing on sensitive and disruptive questions such as the EU or NATO. Above all, the collective consciousness about the current situation in Portugal is common to all the actors; therefore, measures with a beneficial social impact as well as those focused on reducing the economic asphyxia in the country are a priority and serve as the engine which made the mutual agreement possible.

Briefly, the PS, the major force of the leftist coalition in government, claims that its programme will reduce the deficit to below 3% by 2016, lower the VAT to 13% in the restaurant sector, ensure that a majority stake in TAP remains within the State, increase the minimum wage to €600 by 2019, cancel transport privatisation of Lisbon and Porto, cancel fees for abortions, cut down fees and restore transportation for hospital patients and ensure there are fewer students per class as well as provide free textbooks. Hence, the PS, the Left Bloc and the Communist Party/Greens are all in consensus regarding these measures and have officially declared them in their joint statement.

 European Reactions

At the European level, the chair of the EPP in the European Parliament, Manfred Weber, has shared depreciative comments on Twitter, saying the “future of the people and Portugal’s stability are at stake. Left-wing parties act against the will of the voters and the winners of the elections.” In return, former MEP and LIVRE/TDA leader Rui Tavares has fired back, wittily asking the MEP whether he was able to count. “Is 123 MPs less than 107? Do not confuse things further,” he accused. Ironically, one day after the government’s fall, Lisbon started the session leading the European stock market in gains. Ambrose Evans-Pritchard, The Daily Telegraph’s international business editor, has not hidden his contentment over the upturn of politics in Portugal; moreover, Evans-Pritchard claimed Germany has lost a key ally in the southern country, the “good student” who scrupulously  followed the German recipe in a somewhat dubious policy of indebtedness. By overthrowing the right-wing government and thus forming a left bloc of anti-austerity opposition, there is a possibility that it may spill over to their Spanish neighbor should PSOE (Partido Socialista Obrero Española) win the upcoming election and form a coalition with the left-wing parties. “There would then be an emerging ‘Latin bloc’ with the heft to confront Germany and push for a fundamental overhaul of EMU economic strategy. At the very least, the political chemistry of the eurozone would change beyond recognition,” analysed Evans-Pritchard.

Marta Pacheco

Marta Pacheco studied Political Science and Media & Journalism at the Catholic University of Portugal (UCP). An independent researcher based in Brussels, she has been active in reporting EU and international affairs as a journalist contributor for media outlets in Brussels. Former Blue Book trainee in the European Commission and with a keen interest on politics and global affairs, Marta has been developing her skills and knowledge in the healthcare field, energy & environment and in the financial crisis.

Would you like to share your thoughts?

Your email address will not be published.

Legal note

1.    Terms and Conditions

2.    Privacy Policy

3.    Cookies Policy


1.    Terms and Conditions

Contact data for the web owner

This website has been created by KATOIKOS to promote their products and services.

– Name: Katoikos, S.L

– Co. tax Code:  B87123162

– Address:  Calle Campomanes 10, 28013  Madrid (SPAIN)

Registration details: Registered in the Commercial Register of Madrid.

Intellectual and Industrial Property

The various elements of this page, and website as a whole, are protected by Spanish legislation on intellectual and industrial property. The trademarks, trade names or logos appearing on this website are the property of the company, or, where appropriate, of third parties, and are protected by Trademarks Law, and of which KATOIKOS holds the legitimate license.

The information provided may not be used for commercial or public purposes, or modified. If the user downloads materials for personal and non-commercial use, warnings shall be kept about copyright and trademarks. To download and use the company logo that appears on the website, prior authorization is required.

Any unauthorised use of the images may violate copyright laws, trademark laws, the laws of privacy and publicity, and communications regulations and statutes.

Liability for Damage

KATOIKOS assumes no liability for damages you may suffer when browsing the web or in the use of computer applications that are part of it. Neither are warranties given as to the correction of malfunctions or updating of content.

Content you share with us

We may include features on this website that allow you to share your content with us and other users of the site. Please note that by sharing content it may become publicly accessible. You grant to Katoikos a worldwide, non-exclusive, transferable, royalty-free, perpetual, irrevocable right and license, without compensation to you:

 (a) to use, reproduce, distribute, adapt (including without limitation edit, modify, translate, and reformat), derive, transmit, display and perform, publicly or otherwise, such content, in any media now known or hereafter developed, for Kaotikos’ business purposes, and

 (b) to sublicense the foregoing rights, through multiple tiers, to the maximum extent permitted by applicable law. The foregoing licenses shall survive any termination of your use of the site, as further described below.

For all of the content you share through the site, you represent and warrant that you have all rights necessary for you to grant these licenses, and that such content, and your provision or creation thereof through the site, complies with all applicable laws, rules, and regulations and does not infringe or otherwise violate the copyright, trademark, trade secret, privacy or other intellectual property or other rights of any third party, and is furthermore free from viruses and other malware.

Rules of Conduct

When using this website and/or sharing content with us, you are prohibited from posting or transmitting :

1. any unlawful, threatening, defamatory, racist, obscene, scandalous, deceptive, false, fraudulent, inflammatory or profane material or any material that could constitute or encourage conduct that would be considered a criminal offence, give rise to civil liability, or otherwise violate any law.
2. Any virus, worm, Trojan horse, Easter egg, time bomb, spyware or other computer code, file, or program that is harmful or invasive or may or is intended to damage or hijack the operation of, or to monitor the use of, any hardware, software or equipment;
3. Any unsolicited or unauthorized advertising, promotional materials, “junk mail,” “spam,” “chain letter,” “pyramid scheme” or investment opportunity, or any other form of solicitation; and
4. Any material non-public information about a person or a company without the proper authorization to do so.

In addition, you will not:

1. Use this website for any fraudulent or unlawful purpose;
2. Interfere with or disrupt the operation of the website or the servers or networks used to make the website available; or violate any requirements, procedures, policies or regulations of such networks;
3. Access or use this website through any technology or means other than those expressly designated by us.
4. Restrict or inhibit any other person from using this website (including by hacking or defacing any portion of the website);
5. Except as expressly permitted by applicable law, modify, adapt, translate, reverse engineer, decompile or disassemble any portion of this website.
6. Remove any copyright, trademark or other proprietary rights notice from this website.
7. Frame or mirror any part of the webiste without our express prior written consent;
8. Create a database by systematically downloading and storing all or any content;
9. Use any robot, spider, site search/retrieval application or other manual or automatic device to retrieve, index, “scrape,” “data mine” or in any way reproduce or circumvent the navigational structure or presentation of this website, without our express prior written consent.


Kaotikos  reserves the right to remove any messages or statements or cancel any links.

This site may include hyperlinks to other web sites that are not owned or controlled by Katoikos. Katoikos has no control over, and assumes no responsibility for, the content, privacy policies, security or practices of any third party websites.

Content may be hosted on YouTube or other social media. Those operate their own set of terms and conditions and privacy policy which are separate to the ones presented on this website. Katoikos no control over and assumes no responsibility for, the content, privacy policies, security or practices on YouTube or other social media.

 The right to terminate your access

Katoikos reserves the right to terminate your access to this website at any time if you do not comply with these Terms and Conditions or you infringe Kaotikos’ rights in the content provided on this website.

Governing Law

These Terms and Conditions are governed by and construed in accordance with the laws of Spain, without regard to its choice of law provisions.  You agree to the exclusive jurisdiction by the courts of Spain.

Changes to the Terms

Katoikos reserves the right to make changes to the Terms and Conditions from time to time. You acknowledge and agree that your continued access to or use of this website will constitute your acceptance of such changes.

2.    Privacy Policy

Kaotikos takes the protection of your personal data very seriously and collects, processes and uses your data only in accordance with the standards of the legal data protection regulations.

Data is collected, processed and used with technologyes of the provider web trends for marketing and optimisation purposes and also for sending news and information you may be interested in by any electronic services, such as email or SMS.

Our website user’s database is registered at the Spanish Agency of Data Protection. You have the rights of access, rectification, deletion and opposition, regulated in articles 14 to 16 of the LOPD.

For this, please write to:

KATOIKOS (Data Protection) Calle Campomanes 10, 28013, Madrid (SPAIN)

Or send an email to info@katoikos.eu. Your ID will be requested for these issues.

3.    Cookies Policy

This site, like many others, uses small files called cookies to help us customise your experience. Find out more about cookies and how you can control them.

This page contains information on what ‘cookies’ are, the cookies used by the Kaotikos’ website and how to switch cookies off in your browser.

If it does not provide the information you were looking for, or you have any further questions about the use of cookies on the Katoikos’s website, please email info@katoikos.eu.

What are ‘cookies’?

‘Cookies’ are small text files that are stored by the browser (for example, Internet Explorer or Safari) on your computer or mobile phone. They allow websites to store things like user preferences. You can think of cookies as providing a ‘memory’ for the website, so that it can recognise you when you come back and respond appropriately.

How does the Katoikos’s website use cookies?

A visit to a page on the Kaotikos’s website may generate the following type of cookies: Anonymous analytics cookies.

This website uses Google Analytics, a web analytics service provided by Google, Inc., a Delaware company whose main office is at 1600 Amphitheatre Parkway, Mountain View (California), CA 94043, USA (“Google”).

Google Analytics uses “cookies”, which are text files placed on your computer, to help the website analyze how users use the site. The information generated by the cookie about your use of the website (including your IP address) will be transmitted to and stored by Google on servers in the United States. Google will use this information on our behalf in order to track your use of the website, compiling reports on website activity and providing other services relating to website activity and internet usage. Google may also transfer this information to third parties where required to do so by law, or where such third parties process the information on Google’s behalf. Google will not associate your IP address with any other data held by Google.

Anonymous analytics cookies

Cookier Name Origin Aim End
__utma Google Analysis 2 years since set –up or update
__utmb Google Analysis 30 minutes since set –up or update
__utmc Google Analysis When browser sesión ends
_utmt Google Analysis 10 minutes since set –up or update
__utmz Google Analysis 6 months since set –up or update

How do I turn cookies off?

It is usually possible to stop your browser accepting cookies, or to stop it accepting cookies from a particular website. All modern browsers allow you to change your cookie settings. You can usually find these settings in the ‘options’ or ‘preferences’ menu of your browser. To understand these settings, the following links may be helpful, or you can use the ‘Help’ option in your browser for more details.

Cookie settings in Internet Explorer
Cookie settings in Firefox
Cookie settings in Chrome
Cookie settings in Safari web and iOS.


© 2019 Katoikos, all rights are reserved. Developed by eMutation | New Media

Become a
Being up to date with Europe only takes a few seconds.
Your information will never shared with a third party.
Get our periodical newsletter sent to your inbox!
I have read and agreed the Privacy Policy (required)
Become a
Being up to date with Europe only takes a few seconds.
Get our periodical newsletter sent to your inbox!
Your information will never shared with a third party.
I have read and agreed the Privacy Policy (required)