OK, I promise, this one will be the last post on the Catalan elections until there's some real news. This is just a summary of how each side "won" and how they "lost" in these elections.
Convergence and Union (CiU): Won because they got the most seats and therefore are traditionally the first to get a turn at forming a new government. Can form an absolute majority with ERC. Lost because they dropped ten seats since the last elections in 1999 and because they might not get what they want if ERC goes with the leftist coalition.
Catalan Socialist Party (PSC): Won because they got the most individual votes and because they can form a governing coalition with ERC and ICV. Lost because they won't get what they want if ERC goes with Convergence and Union, because they lost head to head against CiU in seats, and because they also dropped ten seats from the last election.
Republican Left of Catalonia (ERC): Won. Almost doubled their number of seats. They get to decide who the next Prime Minister will be. Whoever offers most, CiU or the PSC, will get their support and be able to form a governing coalition. And you can't make a coalition without them.
People's Party (PP): Won because they gained three seats. Lost because they will not be a part of the next coalition no matter what happens.
Initiative for Catalonia-Greens (ICV): Won because they gained four seats and will be part of the governing coalition if ERC decides to throw in with the PSC. Lost because they may be left out, it's not their decision, and because they came in fifth in both popular votes and seats.
How this will affect national politics: The PP is neither hurt nor helped by these results. They did slightly better than they were expected to do. Doesn't change anything important. The Socialists are hurt badly, though, since they lost a fifth of their seats, and may not get to lead the governing coalition. This just makes Zap look even worse: since he's been in charge of the Socialist Party he's lost the March municipals, the March regionals, the re-vote in Madrid, and now the Catalan regionals. We never get tired of predicting Zap's demise. Maybe he's already toast and the Bono-Chavez-Ibarra alliance will spread butter and jam all over him and his sleazy Guerrista pals and gobble them down. If they're lucky they'll get to put Maragall on TOP BROWN, too. They'd like to get rid of him and his annoying pandering to the Catalanista vote which he'll never win and which only serves to piss off voters in the rest of Spain.