Portugal: Soares Returns

A triumph without laughter

In other circumstances, Mario Scares might have savored his victory. He and his Socialist Party had just been returned to power after five years in the wilderness. Their electoral success came nine years to the day after the overthrow of a dictatorship that Scares had opposed for most of his adult life. But in Portugal, winning elections is no cause for rejoicing. The Socialist Party, Scares glumly declared, "holds the hopes of millions of Portuguese without feeling triumphant."

Triumphant, no. Beleaguered, almost certainly. Scares and the Socialists have inherited an economy in crisis ($13 billion in foreign...

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