Voters see Feijóo as candidate projecting a presidential image

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Born into a modest family, he was described as a “responsible and obedient” young man who pursued a law degree during the early years of democracy before becoming a civil servant

A heated campaign debate against Socialist Party leader Pedro Sánchez elevated the opposition leader’s political standing in the eyes of many Spaniards. Alberto Núñez Feijóo emerged victorious against the seasoned head of government, projecting a presidential image that ultimately persuaded numerous undecided individuals seeking a change in direction.

Despite leading the Popular Party for over a year, Feijóo had a low profile. He spent much of his political career in Galicia, heading the regional government there for 13 years. Renewing his mandate with majorities, he prevented the local rise of the extreme right. 

Born into a modest family, he was described as a “responsible and obedient” young man who pursued a law degree during the early years of democracy. Although he aspired to becoming a magistrate, he chose to become a civil servant to support his family when his father lost his job.

In 1995, a photograph was taken that he would come to regret years later. Feijóo, who was in the Galician government, was snapped posing on a yacht with a drug dealer Marcial Dorado. The politician claimed he didn’t know who he was and they were not even friends. First published in 2013, the photo reappeared in the media in the final stretch of this electoral campaign.

In 2006 he assumed the leadership of the Popular Party in Galicia. Three years later, he met his current partner, a Galician businesswoman, with whom he has a son… and firmly took the reins of the regional government. For years, Feijóo rejected temptation from Madrid. He said his “sole ambition” was focused on Galicia.

But, when the party faced internal conflicts, he couldn’t ignore the cry for help.  To many, Feijóo represents unity, efficiency, and predictability while his position on international politics remain somewhat undefined. His primary arguments concentrate on abolishing “el sanchismo,” which he has defined as the art of “agreeing to do whatever, with whomever and at whatever price, in order to remain in power for as long as possible”. This argument coudl be a simple, straightforward appeal to those Spaniards who desire a change in direction. 

Following the last debate with Sanchez, the only one between the two candidates, the polls indicated a shift of votes from the extreme right towards the Popular Party, as well as from socialist ranks. 

Similar to his approach in Galicia, Feijóo wants a majority that will allow him to govern without constraints or surprises.

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