As Spain braces for another snap election after months of fruitless negotiations, Ciudadanos (Cs) has made a surprise proposal to prevent fresh polls: enabling a Socialist government if Pedro Sánchez rules out using his presidential powers to pardon the Catalan political prisoners awaiting verdict in the independence referendum trial.

Cs leader Albert Rivera called on the People’s Party, the other major right-wing party in the Spanish Congress, to facilitate Sánchez’s presidency as a “state solution”—a double-edged proposal that could either save Spain from another election, or present Rivera as a statesman in the upcoming election campaign if the offer is rejected.