Election changes may help extremists

The amendment may not fulfil the expectations of its authors.

The 2017 regional elections may be the last to feature two rounds of voting. The 2017 regional elections may be the last to feature two rounds of voting. (Source: SME)

Back in November 2013, Slovakia woke up to a morning surprise when far-right extremist Marian Kotleba beat his Smer-nominated opponent Vladimír Maňka in the run-off for the governor’s post in Banská Bystrica Region.

A similar situation might be repeated in the future if the parliament adopts an amendment concerning regional elections that, among other things, seeks to change the voting from two rounds to just one, as some analysts warn that this may help extremists to win more regional governor seats.

While the coalition politicians talk mostly about saving money on the second round, some observers also see other reasons behind the proposal.

“I assume that behind this initiative and unusually strong political will to change the election rules is the effort to prevent the creation of unpredictable anti-coalition alliances for the second round,” sociologist Oľga Gyárfášová told The Slovak Spectator.

Additionally, Political analyst Erik Láštic from Comenius University in Bratislava calls the proposed changes “political”, explaining the current ruling coalition probably expects it will maintain its current posts or even increase their number.

“Yet the expectations of the parties do not have to become reality,” Láštic told The Slovak Spectator, adding that “regarding the traditionally low turnout, even an unexpected candidate supported by disciplined voters can win”.

The rest of this article is premium content at Spectator.sk
Subscribe now for full access

I already have subscription - Sign in

Subscription provides you with:
  • Immediate access to all locked articles (premium content) on Spectator.sk
  • Special weekly news summary + an audio recording with a weekly news summary to listen to at your convenience (received on a weekly basis directly to your e-mail)
  • PDF version of the latest issue of our newspaper, The Slovak Spectator, emailed directly to you
  • Access to all premium content on Sme.sk and Korzar.sk

Get daily Slovak news directly to your inbox

Theme: Election

Read more articles by the topic

Top stories

Economic restart after COVID-19 should be green

Slovakia’s plan for using money from the EU’s Recovery Fund, innovation potential and examples of green solutions and the challenge of renovating buildings are among the highlights of the latest Business Focus.

The Velux plant in Partizánske utilises 97 percent of waste from production.

Cabinet agrees on COVID screening

More details will be presented tomorrow.

Košice

More tips for outings in Bratislava during the lockdown

Walks along the Danube bank offer a feeling of being far from the city rush.

This place, part of Ovsištské Lúky (Ovsište Meadows) in Petržalka, is still Bratislava.

Roundup: Fairytale app that makes children read

An award-winning design by a Slovak architect and a trip to Zádielska dolina valley. Here’s your latest roundup.

A man wearing a face covering sits in an armchair on the snow-covered Main Street in Košice on January 13, 2021.