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Facing evictions, unemployment and a new government in Spain

Arturo Rodriguez / AP

Azucena Paredes, an unemployed mother of three children, cries during her eviction in Madrid on Friday, Nov. 18, 2011. As in many European countries, Spanish mortgages are not like US-style ones in which defaulters can return the keys to the bank and walk away from their debt, albeit with their credit rating in ruins. Here, mortgage holders not only have to give the house back, but also pay off bank debt. If they cannot, upon their death it is passed on to their relatives.

Arturo Rodriguez / AP

Police officers are seen through peephole of Azucena Paredes's home, an unemployed mother of three children, before her eviction in Madrid, Friday on Nov. 18, 2011.

According to polls, it is widely expected that Spain's elections on Sunday will welcome the center-right People's Party taking over the current seven-year-old Socialist government. Many challenges face the new government, which will be taking over a country in the throws of economic distress, with unemployment rates at 21.5%. But before the Spanish see improvements, they will likely see things worsen.

AP reports:

The task facing the PP will be to assure markets that Spain will continue to do everything to meet its pledges to shrink the deficit.

But a much deeper reform of the labor market, which the PP plans, and even tougher cuts needed to meet deficit targets in the year ahead, will help push the economy into recession, and send the 21.5 percent unemployment rate higher in the short-term.

"The first half of the year will be hard because they will have to cut brutally. It will be the hardest we've seen in the crisis," said Pablo Vazquez, director of economic think-tank FEDEA.

For the complete story: Spain recession more likely on new austerity.

Arturo Rodriguez / AP

Azucena Paredes' grandmother Tomasa Morcillo, 87, picks up her personal belongings as she and her family are evicted in Madrid, Friday on Nov. 18, 2011.

Arturo Rodriguez / AP

A protester is removed by police officers during a protest to stop the eviction of Azucena Paredes, an unemployed mother of three children, in Madrid on Friday, Nov. 18, 2011.