Spanish Socialist Workers' Party

Spanish Socialist Workers' Party

Partido Socialista Obrero Español
PresidentCristina Narbona
Secretary-GeneralPedro Sánchez
Spokesperson in CongressAdriana Lastra
Spokesperson in SenateAnder Gil
FounderPablo Iglesias Posse
Founded2 May 1879 (139 years ago) (1879-05-02)
HeadquartersC/ Ferraz, 70
28008 Madrid, Spain
NewspaperEl Socialista
Student wingCampus Joven
Youth wingSocialist Youth of Spain
Trade unionGeneral Union of Workers
Membership (2017)Decrease187,360[1]
IdeologySocial democracy[2][3]
Political positionCentre-left[2]
European affiliationParty of European Socialists
International affiliationProgressive Alliance
Socialist International
European Parliament groupProgressive Alliance of Socialists and Democrats
Colors     Red
"Himno del PSOE"[6]
"Anthem of the PSOE"
Congress of Deputies
84 / 350
62 / 265
European Parliament
14 / 54
Regional Parliaments
346 / 1,268
Regional Governments
7 / 19
Provincial deputations[7]
391 / 1,040

The Spanish Socialist Workers' Party (Spanish: Partido Socialista Obrero Español [paɾˈtiðo soθjaˈlista oβɾeɾo espaˈɲol] (About this soundlisten); PSOE [peˈsoe] (About this soundlisten)) is a social-democratic[8] political party in Spain. The PSOE has been in government for a longer time than any other political party in modern democratic Spain: from 1982 to 1996 under Felipe González; from 2004 to 2011 under José Luis Rodríguez Zapatero, and currently since 2018 under Pedro Sánchez.

The PSOE was founded in 1879, which makes it the oldest party currently active in Spain. The PSOE played a key role during the Second Spanish Republic, being part of coalition government from 1931 to 1933 and from 1936 to 1939, when the Republic was defeated by Francisco Franco in the Spanish Civil War. Historically a Marxist party, it abandoned Marxism in 1979.[9] The PSOE has historically had strong ties with the General Union of Workers (UGT), a Spanish trade union. For decades, UGT membership was a requirement for PSOE membership. However, since the 1980s UGT has frequently criticized the economic policies of PSOE, even calling for a general strike against the PSOE government on 14 December 1988.[10] The PSOE is a member of the Party of European Socialists, Progressive Alliance and the Socialist International.[10] In the European Parliament, PSOE's 14 Members of the European Parliament (MEPs) sit in the Socialists and Democrats (S&D) European parliamentary group.


From Marxism to social democracy

Pablo Iglesias founded the party in 1879

PSOE was founded with the purpose of representing and defending the interests of the working class formed during the Industrial Revolution in the 19th century.[citation needed] In its beginnings, PSOE's main objective was the defense of worker's rights and the achievement of the ideals of socialism, emerging from contemporary philosophy and Marxist politics, by securing political power for the working class and socialising the means of production in order to establish a dictatorship of the proletariat in the transition to socialist society. The ideology of the Spanish Socialist Worker's Party has evolved throughout the 20th century according to relevant historical events and the evolution of Spanish society.

In 1979, the party abandoned its definitive Marxist theses at the hands of its then secretary general Felipe González, not before overcoming great tensions and two congresses, the first of which preferred to maintain Marxism. Before this situation, notable internal leaders like Pablo Castellano or Luis Gómez Llorente founded the internal faction of Left Socialists, which included the militants who would not renounce Marxism. This allowed for the consolidation of the leftist forces in PSOE. From this moment, the diverse events both outside and within the party led to projects that resembled those of other European social democratic parties and acceptance of the defence of the market economy.

Currently, PSOE defines itself as "social democratic, centre-left and progressive". It is grouped with other self-styled socialists, social democrats and labour parties in the Party of European Socialists.


During the Second Republic the matter of the conception of the State was open within the party: two different views connected in discourse to the interests of the working class competed against each other, a centralist view as well as a federal one.[11] The late years of the Francoist dictatorship was a period in which PSOE defended the right to "self-determination of the peoples of Spain", in what it was a reflection of both an ideologic and a pragmatist approach.[12] Ultimately, the party, while sticking to a preference for a federal system, gradually ceased to mention the notion of self-determination during the Spanish transition to democracy.[13] Postulates coming from peripheral nationalisms that have been assumed by elements of the party, bringing an understanding of Catalonia, the Basque Country and Galicia as nations and thus, deserving of a different treatment than the rest of regions, have been heavily criticised by other party elements, as according to the later, they would undermine the principle of territorial equality among the autonomous communities.[14]

Other Languages
srpskohrvatski / српскохрватски: Španska socijalistička radnička partija