Europe

Regional elections unlikely to end stalemate in Spain

  • Arnaldo Otegi, a prominent Basque separatist politician of the Basque party EH Bildu, center, during the regional elections at the Basque region in San Sebastian, Spain, on Sunday, Sept. 25, 2016. Residents of Spain's Basque and Galicia regions voted in regional parliamentary elections on Sunday, but with few hopes of ending the country's 9-month political stalemate and avoiding a third round of national elections in one year. (AP Photo/Alvaro Barrientos)

    Arnaldo Otegi, a prominent Basque separatist politician of the Basque party EH Bildu, center, during the regional elections at the Basque region in San Sebastian, Spain, on Sunday, Sept. 25, 2016. Residents of Spain's Basque and Galicia regions voted in regional parliamentary elections on Sunday, but with few hopes of ending the country's 9-month political stalemate and avoiding a third round of national elections in one year. (AP Photo/Alvaro Barrientos)  (The Associated Press)

  • Arnaldo Otegi, second right, a prominent Basque separatist politician of the Basque party EH Bildu, Jasone Agire, third left, and Miren Larrion, right, during the regional elections at the Basque region in San Sebastian, Spain, on Sunday, Sept. 25, 2016. Residents of Spain's Basque and Galicia regions voted in regional parliamentary elections on Sunday, but with few hopes of ending the country's 9-month political stalemate and avoiding a third round of national elections in one year. (AP Photo/Alvaro Barrientos)

    Arnaldo Otegi, second right, a prominent Basque separatist politician of the Basque party EH Bildu, Jasone Agire, third left, and Miren Larrion, right, during the regional elections at the Basque region in San Sebastian, Spain, on Sunday, Sept. 25, 2016. Residents of Spain's Basque and Galicia regions voted in regional parliamentary elections on Sunday, but with few hopes of ending the country's 9-month political stalemate and avoiding a third round of national elections in one year. (AP Photo/Alvaro Barrientos)  (The Associated Press)

  • Arnaldo Otegi, a prominent Basque separatist politician of the Basque party EH Bildu, center, gestures during the regional elections at the Basque region in San Sebastian, Spain, on Sunday, Sept. 25, 2016. Residents of Spain's Basque and Galicia regions voted in regional parliamentary elections on Sunday, but with few hopes of ending the country's 9-month political stalemate and avoiding a third round of national elections in one year. (AP Photo/Alvaro Barrientos)

    Arnaldo Otegi, a prominent Basque separatist politician of the Basque party EH Bildu, center, gestures during the regional elections at the Basque region in San Sebastian, Spain, on Sunday, Sept. 25, 2016. Residents of Spain's Basque and Galicia regions voted in regional parliamentary elections on Sunday, but with few hopes of ending the country's 9-month political stalemate and avoiding a third round of national elections in one year. (AP Photo/Alvaro Barrientos)  (The Associated Press)

Spain's Basque and Galicia regions are voting in regional elections, but with few hopes of ending the country's 9-month political stalemate and avoiding a third round of national elections in one year.

Acting Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy's conservative Popular Party has been running a caretaker government for almost a year after two inconclusive rounds of national elections in December and June.

The party won the most seats in both, but lacks the votes in Parliament to form a new government.

Rajoy's party hopes a strong showing in Galicia on Sunday and the possibility of a postelection deal with the ruling Basque Nationalist Party will strengthen its hand.

But Navarra University Public Opinion Professor Manuel Martin Algarra says the regional contests are unlikely to change the situation at the national level.