Ahead of Czech parliamentary elections due on 8-9 October 2021, Czech social democrats face hard times. Unlike their German counterparts, they are losing ground and opinion polls suggest they might not even pass the 5% threshold required to win a seat in the Czech parliament.
Despite their low popularity, Czech social democrats are still optimistic about their future. “According to polls, there are still around 30% of people who have no one to vote for. They will make their decision at the last minute – and that’s where we have to focus our efforts,” said Jan Hamáček, leader of Czech social democrats.
Czech Social Democracy is currently a part of the governing coalition together with the ANO party (Renew) of Prime Minister Andrej Babiš.
However, they faced defeat both in regional elections in 2020 and in EU elections in 2019. The only representative of Czech social democrats in the European Parliament is MEP Radka Maxová, a former candidate and member of ANO who left the party to join social democrats in March 2021.
According to Median agency, Babiš dominates current opinion polls with 27% of the votes. He is followed by centre-right coalition SPOLU formed by Civic democrats (ECR), Christian democrats and conservative TOP 09 party (both EPP affiliated) with 21%. The Czech Pirate Party together with its coalition partner Mayors and Independents stands at 20.5%.
Both opposition groupings hinted that they were ready to cooperate and form an anti-Babiš government after October’s elections. However, it is expected that President Miloš Zeman will nominate Babiš to create the new government regardless of the potential success of any coalition.
(Aneta Zachová | EURACTIV.cz)