The people of Portugal, have been immersed in their newly found freedom of political activity ever since the overthrow of the right-wing dictatorship in 1974.
The people of Portugal, have been immersed in their newly found freedom of political activity ever since the overthrow of the right-wing dictatorship in 1974. This month, they are currently involved in a campaign for municipal elections throughout the country. It is taking place within months of the general election which brought to power the minority socialist government led by Dr. Mario Soares.
At the start of the campaign towards the end of November, posters went up overnight in Lisbon, the Portuguese capital. The december twelfth elections, while not directly related to the national government, could bring about the fall of minority socialist rule by indirect influence. Although the poll is only for 45,000 town hall and parish representatives, it's generally seen as a vote of confidence in the national government.
The Socialist Government has 107 of the 263 seats in parliament. Its efforts to cure the nation's economic crisis have been condemned by the right wing as ineffective, and by the Communists as harmful. During town hall election campaigning, Prime Minister Soares said his party would not try to rule against eh will of the people. This was interpreted by political observers, according to news agency reports out of Lisbon, as conceding that the local government poll could have a wide national impact.