The race of Susana Díaz and Pedro Sánchez for the leadership of the PSOE is very much equal taking into account the number of guarantees for their candidacies presented by each of them when the deadline to provide the backups was closed yesterday. The Andalusian president accredited more than 63,600 signatures of support and surpassed in little less than 6,000 the former secretary general of the party, who contributed little more than 57,700 guarantees. Patxi Lopez, the third of the great contenders, only had 12,000 backups.
This preliminary primaries process mobilized more than 71 percent of the party's nearly 188,000 members, according to the recently closed official census, which reflects 11,000 members less in the past three years. The high participation prevented from knowing the final result of the count, in which half a hundred people worked until early morning in the socialist headquarters of Ferraz.
The percentage of affiliates who gave their support to some of the main aspirants to lead the party exceeds 66 percent of direct participation in the election of the secretary general in 2014, when Pedro Sánchez overwhelmingly surpassed Eduardo Madina. This concurrence resembles the procedure of the guarantees in a first round, a formula that Patxi López has been defending throughout his campaign as an innovation to the internal procedure, although in this case none of the candidates is left behind.
A process, that of the guarantees, thought only to serve as a filter to the concurrence - in fact, yesterday four other witness candidates were left behind. Due to the great polarization that the party lives, it became a survey of the results we can expect next May 21st, when socialist affiliates are called to vote for their leader.
Having cleared the target of the 9,368 guarantees necessary to obtain formal recognition as a candidate, Susana Díaz's team forced itself to surpass the 41,000 guarantees with which Sánchez anticipated his victory over Madina three years ago. Diaz surpassed that initial estimate and credited 63,610 signatures, 41.7 percent of them coming from her region. The 26,551 Andalusian supports of the candidate delivered yesterday represent 60 percent of the 45,000 registered socialists in the community, the largest federation of the party. Diaz triples in her territory 8,818 guarantees provided by Sánchez with the same origin. However, the Andalusian president has little support in Catalonia and the Basque Country, where she has barely added a thousand supports in total.