Slovakia Before the Elections: A Chance for Change? 


The Liberals are looking to the next parliamentary elections in Slovakia with hope, but also with concern. A picture of the mood in the country.

The elections to the Slovak National Council, a unicameral parliament with 150 MPs, will take place on 29 February 2020. In addition to the established parties, numerous new political groups are competing for voters’ votes. The opposition has a clear goal: to replace the Social Democratic Party “Direction – Social Democracy” (Smer-SD), which is ruling in a tripartite coalition, after ten years of power. The Social Democrats lost the favor of voters especially in the past two years after numerous corruption scandals by their top politicians came to light. Despite the declared willingness to join forces, it seems that it is difficult for the opposition to find a common denominator. Continue reading

Zuzana Čaputová Abroad: Winning Hearts, Showing Elbows and Setting Fashion Trends 

Čaputová and German President Steinmeier – Twitter: Zuzana Čaputová, 21.08.19

Mrs. Čaputová goes on eight business trips during the first summer of her presidency. One of them is taking place in Germany just now. So what can Berlin expect? Well, judging from her previous visits, it is hard to tell, but it will definitively be worth paying attention to. Continue reading

A Letter From… Slovakia! 


In Slovakia, the European Parliament elections were always considered as peripheric in terms of both the interest of the citizens and the fact that they barely ever brought a surprising change. Thus, it is only fair to say that the European Parliament election that has taken place on the 25th May 2019 represents a dramatic departure from the past.


In 2014, Slovakia managed to set a historically low turnout for the European Parliament election at 13%. This turnout was a blunder that no politician in Slovakia wanted to see replicated. A big portion of the impetus came early last year, when a murder of a young journalist and his fiancée has led to massive protests and new political interest that has been most embodied by a coalition of two new parties. Continue reading

Linkspopulist Fico vor der Wiederwahl

Source: flickr/Milan Cupka

Einen Tag vor den am 5. März in der Slowakei anstehenden Parlamentswahlen besagen die Umfragen, dass die seit 2012 allein regierende linkspopulistische Partei „Smer-SD“ (Richtung-Sozialdemokraten) von Ministerpräsident Robert Fico erneut das Rennen machen wird. Je nach Meinungsforschungsinstitut wollen bis zu 36 Prozent der Wähler Fico ihre Stimme geben. Das wären zwar acht Prozent weniger als vor vier Jahren, doch Smer-SD wäre weiterhin die stärkste politische Kraft.

Insgesamt bewerben sich 23 politische Parteien, Bewegungen und Wahlkoalitionen um die 150 Sitze im Slowakischen Nationalrat, doch nur sieben dürfte den Umfragen nach der Einzug ins Parlament gelingen, darunter auch die liberale SaS und die neue Partei „Siet“ (Netzwerk).    Continue reading