Czech press survey - December 14

Zleva předseda ČSSD Bohuslav Sobotka, předseda hnutí ANO Andrej Babiš a předseda KDU-ČSL Pavel Bělobrádek.

published: 14.12.2013, 13:25 | updated: 14.12.2013 13:52:17

Prague - The participation of the Christian Democrats (KDU-CSL) in the nascent Czech government is crucial for Social Democrat (CSSD) head and potential PM Bohuslav Sobotka as the KDU-CSL´s departure for opposition would mean his end, Martin Zverina writes in daily Lidove noviny (LN) today.

On the other hand, Andrej Babis, leader of the ANO movement, the third coalition partner, does not need the Christian Democrats and he can anytime replace them with the populist Dawn of Direct Democracy or any other "negotiable entity" in the Chamber of Deputies, Zverina adds.

Nevertheless, a coalition kept afloat by Tomio Okamura´s Dawn or the Communists (KSCM) would be a hell for the CSSD and Sobotka´s opponents in the party would definitely start to act.

This is why the unfortunate Sobotka can do nothing but meet the KDU-CSL´s demands, Zverina says.

He recalls that the Christian Democrats have already given up their key programme issue, the joint taxation of married couples, and this is why they need some compensation.

Moreover, Sobotka should rather rely on the Christian Democrats than on ANO whose experience with the executive is negligible, Zverina writes.

"The coalition soap opera," Alexandr Mitrofanov writes in Pravo commenting on the latest developments of the three-party coalition of the Social Democrats (CSSD), the ANO movement and the Christian Democrats (KDU-CSL).

This soap opera has two story lines.

In the first one, the parties´ leaders stand in front of TV cameras looking constructively when announcing the completion of the programme of their future government. It seems that "their wedding" has been arranged, Mitrofanov writes.

However, in the other line the bride plays the main role. She is currently in the United States from where she is sending messages saying she could still change her mind and not marry this "country bumpkin," Mitrofanov says, hinting at Christian Democrat chairman Pavel Belobradek.

By this "public extortion," Belobradek will hardly reach trustworthiness, he adds.

It seems that he is just exerting pressure to gain more government posts. However, if this became a long-term working method of the Christian Democrats, it would end up in a brawl. And people are fed up with political brawls, Mitrofanov concludes.

The aid to families with children, embedded in the programme part of the coalition agreement, is a right step in spite of its right-wing opponents´ criticism, Jan Keller writes elsewhere in Pravo.

He recalls that the programme part of the three parties´ coalition pact reckons with the introduction of birth allowance for the second child, support to single mothers and the construction of "starting flats" for young people.

"The enemies of the government stability are certainly speaking about the waste of money, which the country cannot afford, Keller adds.

However, if the state does not help young families that have so carelessly decreased their competitiveness on the labour market due to children, they will look after themselves by not having so many children and the population will be decreasing (and ageing), Keller points out.

The right wing might regret it since if fewer children were born, the number of rightist voters would also fall, Keller notes.


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