Monday, 23 October 2017

MfD: Polls show Czech election result may be similar to German

ČTK |
2 October 2017

Prague, Sept 29 (CTK) - Many Czechs espouse the position of protest against the EU, which is why the result of the upcoming general election might remind that in Germany, where the former East Germans, disillusioned at democracy, have backed the protest AfD party, Ondrej Leinert says in Mlada fronta Dnes (MfD) on Friday.

A recent public opinion poll released by the respected CVVM agency showed "explosive data" confirming certain trends that had been discussed behind-the-scenes for some time but had not been confirmed by any public survey before, Leinert writes.

The CVVM poll showed that previous polls underestimated the Party of Direct Democracy (SPD), a minor opposition entity of Tomio Okamura, Leinert writes.

Okamura has repeatedly declared that his SPD does not need journalists to enter parliament. He says he even welcomes being ignored by the media, since this enables him to "boast" of facing censorship, and he prides in lots of fans supporting him on social networks, Leinert writes.

Contrary to Okamura's assertions, public opinion polls did not show any steep rise in the SPD's popularity until the latest CVVM poll appeared, indicating that the SPD might gain as many as 7.3 percent of the vote in the October 20-21 elections, Leinert says.

He writes that an insider has informed him about an internal poll organised by the lower house, according to which the SPD might even attain a two-digit result.

This internal result aroused some politicians' fears of the post-election emergence of a government coalition of the ANO movement, a clear election favourite, with the SPD and a possible latent support of the Communists (KSCM), Leinert writes.

True, ANO members have repeatedly refused beforehand to form a government with the KSCM, but they have been cautious in commenting on the SPD. Encouraged by this, the share of Okamura fans may really increase and reach a double-digit number, Leinert writes.

This is an awful prospect from the point of view of the mainstream parties such as the Social Democrats (CSSD) and the Civic Democrats (ODS), whose election gains would together reach a mere 24 percent, compared with ANO's 31 percent, according to the latest CVVM poll.

Another party destroying the traditional certainties are the Pirates. Up to now, the Pirates have been a funny alternative whose election support rose now and then in a town such as Prague or Marianske Lazne, where a number of liberal voters turned up at polling stations, Leinert writes.

The new CVVM poll, however, ascribed 6.4 percent of the vote to the Pirates, which is more than the mainstream Christian Democrats (KDU-CSL). Like the SPD's, the Pirates' voter preferences may still continue rising. The Pirates are becoming a real force instead of an alternative, which many voters shunned to back, Leinert writes.

On the contrary, the CVVM poll showed a fall of the rightist opposition TOP 09 party, which no polls indicated before, Leinert writes, referring to the 4.5-percent gain the CVVM ascribed to TOP 09.

The Czech election result might be similar to that in Germany, where the eastern Germany, which has benefited from European integration so much, paradoxically voted against it last week, Leinert writes, alluding to the success of the Alternative for Germany (AfD) party.

Similarly, Czech voters are protest-minded in spite of the fact that the Czech Republic has received twice as much money from the EU than what it contributed to the EU, Leinert writes.

A part of Czech voters simply want a change and they consider ANO leader Andrej Babis an embodiment of it, irrespective of fraud suspicions surrounding Babis, a billionaire whose ANO is expected to win the elections, Leinert writes.

Another part of Czechs view Okamura as an embodiment of a desired change, though Okamura entered parliament with another party once before, and this party has disintegrated in the meantime, Leinert writes.

Another part of voters want a change through the Pirates, he writes.

As if the traditional mainstream parties had no place in the upcoming elections. The last chance might have been buried by the KDU-CSL and the Mayors and Independents (STAN), which backpedalled on their election coalition plan that might have united the hesitating voters and turned into a Czech CDU/CSU. However, the KDU-CSL and STAN scrapped the plan recently, arguing that it might be a problem for them to cross the 10-percent threshold required for a two-party coalition, Leinert writes.

Now the 10 percent might be crossed by Okamura, he adds.

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