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Will Kiska run for president?

Media reports suggest that Andrej Kiska will not run again. How does the situation look one year ahead of presidential election?

President Andrej Kiska(Source: Sme - Jozef Jakubčo)

Will Andrej Kiska run for president again? Recently, media reports citing their own sources, which include both opposition and coalition members, have been debating whether Kiska will stand again. Allegedly he is already gradually announcing his decision not to stand to the representatives of the political parties. Family reasons are thought to be behind his decision and it has been said that the public will be officially informed in March.

So, what can we say about Kiska’s candidacy, what can we guess and why is some caution advisable?

What do we know now about Kiska’s presidency and his next candidacy?

Andrej Kiska is one of the most popular politicians there has been for a long time. In the most recent Focus agency poll, he placed first for two different questions: In the case where respondents were asked to spontaneously choose the name of a politician they trusted, he gained 23.4 percent of votes and came just ahead of Prime Minister Robert Fico. For the second question, when respondents were asked to select those they felt most trustworthy from a list of politicians’ names, a total of 52.6 percent expressed their trust in him.

This is one of the reasons why it would be only natural, if a president with such popularity ratings were to run again. So far, no strong challenger has appeared, and a president who vies for re-election has the natural advantage of “being a known quantity”.

It is also much easier for him to campaign. A good example, however narrow, is the re-election of Miloš Zeman in the Czech Republic.

When will Kiska announce his decision?

Andrej Kiska has said in the past that he would announce his decision on whether to run again, or not, by September 2018 at the latest.

“Asked about my political future: I will not found any political party. I will not run for parliament and, of course, I am not considering the position of prime minister. Whether I will run again as an independent, non-party candidate for president – I will tell you all by the end of September of next year, at the latest,” he wrote last April on Facebook. The President’s Office has already hinted that the announcement of his decision on running for president may be brought forward.

Do meetings with leaders indicate anything?

Andrej Kiska has been meeting the leaders of political parties in recent weeks and has allegedly expressed his decision not to run again for the presidential post. So far no party leader has confirmed this directly.

What would be the reasons for not running? How to read the change in public behaviour? How did the opinions change in the past? And what about presidential candidates?

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