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Poll: Smer's voter support at record 41.5 percent

THE LEFT-wing Smer party boosted its popular support to a record high of 41.5 percent in August according to the latest poll by the Statistics Bureau (ŠÚ).

In the general elections on June 17, Smer scored 29.5 percent.

Smer's current popularity is comparable only to the popularity of the Movement for a Democratic Slovakia (HZDS) in the early 1990s. Since 1989, no political party has scored more than 40 percent in general elections, the SME daily wrote.

According to political analyst Miroslav Kusý, the growing popularity of Smer is possibly due to the fact that formerly undecided voters as well as voters for parties that did not do well in the general elections have begun to support Fico's party. The ŠÚ poll showed a drop in support for the non-parliamentary Slovak Communist Party as well as the Free Forum, for instance.

Former PM Mikuláš Dzurinda's Slovak Democratic and Christian Union scored 13 percent in the ŠÚ poll, as opposed to its election result of 18.4 percent, while the ruling coalition Slovak National Party gained 11.3 percent (down from 11.7 percent in general elections).

The opposition Hungarian Coalition Party scored 10.7 percent (down from 11.7 in the elections) and the ruling HZDS of Vladimír Mečiar gained 10.4 percent, up from 8.8 in the elections.

The opposition Christian Democratic Movement received 7.3 percent in the ŠÚ poll, down one percentage point from the party's election result.

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