Poll suggests Smer could struggle to win right to lead next Slovak government

By bne IntelliNews February 10, 2016

Support for Slovakia’s ruling Smer party has dropped amid protests in the education and healthcare sectors, a new poll released on February 10 suggested. The survey, which offers findings similar to another early in February, comes less than a month before the general election, and even hints that a Smer could struggle to win the right to form the next government.

Smer, which won the 2012 vote with 44.4% support, has focused its campaign almost solely on the migrant crisis, a tactic that has seen it reviving in polls over the past year or so. The opposition, which has failed to unite or mount any real challenge to the left-leaning party, has continuously accused government members of corruption. However, recent protests in the education and healthcare seem to be having a far greater impact on the party’s popularity.

Support for Smer now stands at 34.1%, according to a new poll carried out by Focus agency. That would see Smer gain 62 of the 150 seats in parliament, Sme daily reports. The result is only just better than the 58 seats forecast by a poll released last week.

The Focus poll shows that the hard right Slovak National Party (SNS), which is seen as the most likely partner for Smer should it need to form a coalition, would come in third with 8.1% of votes, or 15 Seats. That suggests the pair would get a combined 77 seats, offering a fragile majority between them.

Anti-corruption party Siet is the second most popular in the country, but would win no more than 13.7% of the vote, offering just 25 seats, the survey suggests. Most-Hid, a party that represents the interests of Slovak Hungarian, would come fourth with 8% backing (14 seats), followed by the centre-right Christian Democrat Party (KDH) with 7.5% support (13 seats). The Ordinary people – Nova comes next with 6.4% backing (12 seats and Freedom and Solidarity (SaS) with 5.1% backing (9 seats).



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