Portugal's Socialist Party emerged on Saturday (26 April) with sweeping support for it policy of " Socialism in liberty"-- and its leader, Dr.
Portugal's Socialist Party emerged on Saturday (26 April) with sweeping support for it policy of " Socialism in liberty"-- and its leader, Dr. Mario Soares, as the country's man of the hour -- after a massive vote of confidence at the polls in the ideals of parliamentary democracy.
With the results of Friday's (25 April)election of constituent assembly almost complete, the Socialists had won a comfortable 30 percent of the vote. The centre-left Popular Democrats (P.P.D.) attained 26 percent to place second, with the Communists--who had been through to be riding high on the tide of revolutionary fervour--trailing a poor third with just under 13 per cent. The remaining nine parties contesting the country's first free, multi-party elections in 49 years split the other, fragmented votes.
Dr. Soares immediately sought to head off any conflict his party's big victory might cause in its relations with the military, whose ruling Armed Forces Movement retains effective control of the country for at least the next three years.
He modestly described the result at"a victory for the Armed Forces Movement as they kept their promise to hold elections a year after the coup."And he said he would not use the election results to press for any changes in the composition of the coalition provisional government, in which his Socialists share posts with the military, the P.P.D., the Communists and the para-Communist Portuguese Democratic Movement (M.D.P.)