Anti-system and extremist candidates did not prevail but showed their strength

Harabin did not make it to the second round, but together with Kotleba, they gained 25-percent support.

Štefan HarabinŠtefan Harabin (Source: SITA)

“I am going to win the election,” Štefan Harabin repeated on election night, even after half of the votes had already been counted. He was, as the polls predicted, third.

After all the votes were counted, Harabin gained the support of 14.34 percent of the voters. He is thus out of the game and will not challenge Zuzana Čaputová, the winner of the first round, in two weeks' time, contrary to the expectations of some observers who saw Harabin rather than Maroš Šefčovič as the potential candidate for the second round.

The idea that Harabin could jump over Šefčovič and make it to the second round was more or less due to fear, Tomáš Koziak, political analyst from the Department of Political science at the Faculty of Arts at Pavol Jozef Šafárik University, told The Slovak Spectator. He, however, admitted that Harabin’s result is "unpleasantly high".

“Harabin’s campaign was primitive populism,” Koziak argued, adding that Harabin could not persuade more voters than he did.

25 percent combined

Marian Kotleba also drained some of his votes, Koziak opined. But it is not a given that if Kotleba stepped down in Harabin's favour, it would have shifted his votes towards Harabin.

The final vote count shows Marian Kotleba and Štefan Harabin, representatives of the anti-system and extremist electorate, gained the support of 25 percent of voters.

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