Juan López de Uralde, former head of Greenpeace in Spain and founder of the new environmental party Equo, had a revelation when he went to see Real Sociedad play Rayo Vallecano in the Spanish soccer league earlier this month. He realized that to win a parliamentary seat in Madrid in this Sunday's election, he would need the votes of 10 times the amount of people in the stadium. But the San Sebastián native remains optimistic, convinced Equo will win representation beyond Valencia, where it is teaming up with the Compromís coalition.
What would be a good result for Equo? "To enter parliament," says Uralde. "And it would be very good to form a group with our allies in Valencia and Catalonia."
Not winning a seat in Madrid "would be a bad result, without a doubt," he admits. "[But] I'm convinced, because I sense it in people and because many polls say it. It's very difficult to get a new party noticed in the polls and, nevertheless, we are already appearing in some. Mònica Oltra told me the case of Compromís in Valencia. The CIS poll gave it less than two percent in Valencia city in May and it got 10 percent. CIS undervalues new parties."
But even if it wins no seats, the party will carry on. "Equo will not end on November 20. It is a long-term project. The European elections are more favorable to us because all the votes count. [...] The Socialist Party has shown it doesn't fulfill the things it has in its manifesto, and that is its main burden. What's more, there are many differences. We, for example, want to make cuts in infrastructure. We have put together a very thrifty manifesto in order to overcome the dependence on the construction industry. We are backing a recovery led by the industries that will help us get out of the environmental crisis," he says.