The author is a political scientist and a lecturer
Even an unbiased observer without a greater sense of schadenfreude has to admit a poetical justice in the defeat of the Smer party in regional elections. It is very probable that Smer caused its own defeat in at least one, if not three regions, by changing the two-round system to a one-round plurality vote.
Banská Bystrica candidate for regional governor Ján Lunter confirmed the expectations with his crushing victory over Marian Kotleba. The fascists managed to double the number of their mandates of regional councillors. Thankfully, this just means two seats instead of one.
However, we can hardly be very happy about the fact that these elections – despite their regional nature – probably represent a further weakening of the party system where even various political veterans (especially in Bratislava) pretended to be independent just to get elected.
But it is the nominal winner of these elections, the opposition rightist coalition OĽaNO-SaS-KDH-NOVA-OKS, that raises the biggest concerns.
The success of OĽaNO candidates can be celebrated only until we remember what kind of grouping they are. It is a radical-conservative pseudo-party (instead of party structures, we are rather looking at a conservative civic society), which probably historically contributed the most to the phenomenon of irrational “hipsterisation” of the Slovak political right and its deviation from the normal way parties work.