Spanish parliament convenes but still no sign of government

MADRID (AP) — Deputies elected in Spain’s November elections, the fourth in as many years, are taking their seats in the national parliament but there is still no clear sign that a government can be formed soon and fresh elections avoided.

The 350 deputies will on Tuesday elect a house speaker who will later meet with King Felipe VI. The king will then meet party leaders over the coming weeks in the hope of choosing a candidate he deems capable of forming a government.

Incumbent Socialist Prime Minister Pedro Sánchez is best positioned, his party having won the most seats — 120 —in the election. He has signed a deal with the left-wing United We Can party, which won 32, but they are still way off the 176-seat majority needed in the chamber.