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Rajoy out, Sanchez takes charge in Spain

Rajoy out, Sanchez takes charge in Spain

The ouster on Friday was unprecedented in Spain's modern democracy. Rajoy's opponents say he must take responsibility for his party's involvement in the crimes.

The PNV party was due to make a final decision on whether to continue to back Rajoy during the afternoon, when its leadership holds an extraordinary meeting. It needed 176 votes to pass.

"Our "yes" to Sanchez is a "no" to Rajoy", Mr Tarda said.

In a brief speech before the vote, Rajoy told lawmakers "it has been an honor to leave Spain better than I found it". "If I have offended someone in my role, I ask forgiveness".

Minutes after narrowly winning a no-confidence vote in parliament, the Socialist party leader signaled a change in tone and priorities from Rajoy's unbending commitment to reducing the national debt during his more than six years as prime minister.

The sting looked at Spanish businessmen who were bribing PP politicians in exchange for lucrative public contracts, with the party receiving a $300,000 fine as a result. Judges did not find that current government members had committed any wrongdoing. He had testified that there were no such slush funds.

Referring to Mariano Rajoy's outgoing government, Rivera told reporters on Friday that "we had to censure this government, but not in this way". "We are going to start a new stage".

Sanchez said on Thursday he would stick to the budget put forward by Rajoy and approved by parliament last month if voted into power.

Sanchez promised to abide by a national budget recently negotiated by Rajoy.

The Sanchez government is likely to be a weak one, however.

It was the sweetest of victories - Mr Rajoy beat his Socialist rival twice in elections in 2015 and...

This is the first time in Spanish democratic history that a head of government has been ousted.

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Rajoy was present at the ceremony, shook Sanchez's hand and wished him good luck.

A veteran politician who has survived many crisis, he insisted he meant to serve his four-year term, ruling out an early election he said would be damaging for the strong economic rebound Spain is enjoying after a deep crisis.

He earned a stunning victory to return as leader in May past year when he won an internal party election against Susana Diaz, the candidate anointed by the party's powerbrokers, including former prime ministers Felipe Gonzalez and Jose Luis Rodriguez Zapatero.

Hernando reminded parliament of the successes of the outgoing government.

"Thank you to all Spaniards and good luck".

The unexpected development injected a new element of tension into European Union politics and global financial markets, already unsettled by Italy's struggles to install a government since a March 4 election. His pro-independence opponents in the Catalonia region cast Rajoy as heavy-handed and too quick to deploy riot police, but his supporters saw him a defender of the Spanish unity and the constitution.

Sanchez won the support of Basque and Catalan nationalist parties to oust Rajoy in a parliamentary vote.

The leaders of both parties confirmed they would support the motion yesterday evening.

It also faces the challenge of allaying investor fears over political stability and dealing with Catalan separatists.

The court sentenced 29 people with links to the PP, including a former treasurer, to jail and ordered the party to pay back 245,000 euros ($290,000) which it received from the scheme to help finance election campaigns.

Also, the centre-right Ciudadanos (Citizens) party - which has been leading recent opinion polls - is demanding a snap election and is vowing fierce opposition to Sanchez. He also said he would reactivate social services and infuse new life into pensions.

However his Socialist Party holds just 84 seats out of 350 in the parliament, making it unclear how long his administration can last.