Friday

21st Jul 2017

Focus

Slovak high school voters would send extremists to the EP

  • Slovak secondary school students send a message to traditional parties (Photo: Night Owl City)

Although Slovak voters are yet to elect 13 MEPs to the 751-strong EU Parliament this Saturday (24 May), high school students have already expressed their preferences.

In recent mock elections, almost eleven percent of their votes – translating into three parliamentary seats – were for the far-right Our Slovakia party.

Thank you for reading EUobserver!

Subscribe now and get 40% off for an annual subscription. Sale ends soon.

  1. €90 per year. Use discount code EUOBS40%
  2. or €15 per month
  3. Cancel anytime

EUobserver is an independent, not-for-profit news organization that publishes daily news reports, analysis, and investigations from Brussels and the EU member states. We are an indispensable news source for anyone who wants to know what is going on in the EU.

We are mainly funded by advertising and subscription revenues. As advertising revenues are falling fast, we depend on subscription revenues to support our journalism.

For group, corporate or student subscriptions, please contact us. See also our full Terms of Use.

If you already have an account click here to login.

While these are neither representative results, nor an indicator of the actual upcoming vote, they reveal how the next generation of voters perceives Slovakia, says the Institute for Public Affairs (IVO) who organised the mock vote.

Sixty-two secondary schools took part in the project, with the turnout standing at 46 percent – way above what is typical for EU votes in the country.

The most surprising finding was that the far-right extremists secured three MEPs (as did the ruling social democrats, Smer-SD), with Martin Kotleba, a candidate on the Our Slovakia party list, gaining the most preferential votes. The candidate's name is very similar to his party leader, Marian Kotleba.

The ruling social democrats as well as the main opposition parties should take this preference for the surname Kotleba seriously, said IVO's Zora Butorova.

"This means that mainstream parties are unable to find satisfactory answers to young people's problems."

Vladimir Bilcik, Head of European Studies at the Research Centre of the Slovak Foreign Policy Association, said the emergence of extremist views has been "underestimated" in Slovakia.

He says that mainstream parties should pay more attention to issues such as migration and the Roma minority.

"The problem is that several mainstream parties fight for their political survival, and a ruling party could lose some of its popularity by addressing these topics. It is a short-sighted approach, however."

The latest poll by Focus agency shows that the ruling Social Democrats (Smer-SD) will win the elections with 37 percent, translating into seven seats.

Six more Slovak parties are set to make it into the EP, each gaining one seat. Among them, the Christian Democrats (KDH) are slated to gain the most votes (around 9 percent), with the eurosceptic Freedom and Solidarity Party (SAS) rounding off the list with 5.1 percent of votes.

Turnout is once more set to be extremely low: between 16-21 percent of voters are expected to go to the urns. In 2009, 19.6 percent of Slovaks voted; five years prior to that it was 16.9 percent.

Slovakia's eurosceptics end EU honeymoon

The EU honeymoon is over for Slovakia, say analysts, as eurosceptic voices for the first time make themselves clearly heard in the run-up to European elections later this month.

EUobserved

When two worlds collide

Two worlds collided at the end of last week. The shrill, uncompromising one of British politics and the technocratic, dry, world of the European Commission.

EUobserved

Schadenfreude and fire-walking in the EP

There was outright glee in the EP on Thursday. It was time to dust off everyone’s favourite German word for pleasure in the misfortune of others.

EU parliament approves Juncker commission

MEPs have approved Juncker's new EU commission, with a slightly smaller majority than in 2010, and following a number of concessions on portfolios.

News in Brief

  1. Polish parliament adopts controversial justice reform
  2. GMO opt-out plan unlikely to go anywhere in 2017
  3. Slovak PM threatens to boycott inferior food
  4. France takes Google's 'right to be forgotten' to EU court
  5. Turkey accuses German companies of supporting terror
  6. Israel's Netanyahu caught calling EU 'crazy'
  7. UK does not collect enough data to expel EU nationals
  8. Polish president threatens to veto justice reform

Stakeholders' Highlights

  1. European Jewish CongressJean-Marie Le Pen Faces Trial for Oven Comments About Jewish Singer
  2. ACCAAnnounces Belt & Road Research at Shanghai Conference
  3. ECPAFood waste in the field can double without crop protection. #WithOrWithout #pesticides
  4. EU2017EEEstonia Allocates €1 Million to Alleviate Migratory Pressure From Libya in Italy
  5. Dialogue PlatformFethullah Gulen's Message on the Anniversary of the Coup Attempt in Turkey
  6. Martens CentreWeeding out Fake News: An Approach to Social Media Regulation
  7. European Jewish CongressEJC Concerned by Normalisation of Antisemitic Tropes in Hungary
  8. Counter BalanceOut for Summer Episode 1: How the EIB Sweeps a Development Fiasco Under the Rug
  9. CESICESI to Participate in Sectoral Social Dialogue Committee on Postal Services
  10. ILGA-EuropeMalta Keeps on Rocking: Marriage Equality on Its Way
  11. European Friends of ArmeniaEuFoA Director and MEPs Comment on the Recent Conflict Escalation in Nagorno-Karabakh
  12. EU2017EEEstonian Presidency Kicks off Youth Programme With Coding Summer School

Latest News

  1. Dutch coalition talks lengthiest in 40 years
  2. Polish parliament steps up showdown with EU
  3. EU urges UK to clarify its Brexit positions
  4. Law expert: direct EU powers have become too complicated
  5. Winter is here for Spitzenkandidat, but he'll survive
  6. Mafia money pollutes the EU economy
  7. Central Europe should be wary of Brexit stopping
  8. Poland's 'July coup' and what it means for the judiciary