Parliamentary Elections in Slovakia: Protest Party Wins, Liberals Not in Parliament

 

The eagerly awaited parliamentary elections in Slovakia are over and their winners and losers are known. Igor Matovič, the expected new Slovakian Prime Minister, became the clear winner with his anti-corruption movement “Ordinary people and independent personalities” (OĽaNO). OĽaNO won the election with 25.02 percent. Continue reading

Parliamentary Elections in Slovakia: Between Insecurity and Hope for Change

 

On Saturday, Slovaks will vote on their parliamentary representatives for the next four-year legislature and some observers already ascribe historical significance to the upcoming election campaign. The elections are taking place after four challenging years, which were marked above all by the murder of the journalist Ján Kuciak and his fiancée Martina Kušnírová. The double murder triggered a series of protests against the government and numerous revelations of corruption and mafia contacts right up to the cabinet of the then Social Democratic head of government. Slovaks, whose confidence in institutions and the rule of law has been deeply shaken, are now demanding changes. However, it is difficult to predict who will form future government just a few days before the election. Continue reading

Gambled Away: Government Formation in Spain More Complicated Than Before

Strong right-wing populists come in third – liberal party Ciudadanos crashes

 

Prime Minister Pedro Sánchez and his Social Democratic PSOE (“Partido Socialista Obrero Español” – Spanish Socialist Workers’ Party) have once again become the strongest force in Sunday’s parliamentary elections. Nevertheless, they have clearly missed their ultimate goal: to win votes in order to form a stable government. In fact, PSOE lost three mandates and now has 120 seats in Congress. The absolute majority requires 176 seats, but with the support of the left-wing populist party Unidos Podemos (“Together we can do it”) and the new Más País (“More Land”) the left-wing bloc only has 158 seats. For a progressive government majority, Sánchez would be dependent on the votes of various Catalan parties, which strive for the independence of the autonomous region and emerged strengthened from the 10N – it would be political harakiri. Continue reading

Poland Before the Election: It Remains Exciting

 

On 13th October Poland expects an election of fate. The Prawo i Sprawiedliwość (Law and Justice) party, which has been in power since 2015, has since its election purposefully and skilfully put the country on a national-conservative course with authoritarian traits. It is performing well in polls – not least because of its generous social policy. The opposition still needs to develop some momentum in order to win the elections. Continue reading

“My feminist heart sings” – Scottish Jo Swinson Wins the Race for LibDem Party Leadership

Photo credit: https://www.libdems.org.uk

 

Monday night, one day before the much-noticed change in Tory leadership, the British Liberal Democrats also appointed a new party leader. After predecessor Vince Cable resigned in March, his deputy Joanne Kate “Jo” Swinson became the new incumbent. The 39-year-old Scot cannot only look back on many years of party, parliamentary and ministerial experience, but was also the favourite in the race for the position. Continue reading

Another Session Without Liberals

 

Greece’s conservatives returned to power after a decisive victory in last Sunday’s snap elections. New Democracy (ND), run by Kyriakos Mitsotakis (son of Konstantinos Mitsotakis who served as Prime Minister in the early 1990s, brother of former foreign minister Dora Bakoyannis and uncle to newly elected mayor of Athens Kostas Bakoyannis) has achieved an overwhelming majority in the new parliamentary session with 39,9% and 158 out of 300 seats. It is the first time since 2009 that Greece has a single-party government. “I will be working hard for all the Greeks, even those that did not vote for us. And I will begin immediately because there is no time to waste,” Mitsotakis said. Continue reading