Czech press survey - May 27


27.05.2014 08:06

Prague - The EP elections have sent three messages to the Czech Republic, the first of which says Czechs together with Slovaks remain the most parochial, "non-European" members of the European Union in their relation to it, Jiri Pehe writes in daily Pravo today.


Ilustrační foto - Sada hlasovacích lístků pro volby do Evropského parlamentu konané ve dnech 23. a 24. května 2014. ČTK Štěrba Martin

He writes that the difference between the all-European turnout of about 43 percent and the Czech one - 18 percent - is enormous.

The secodn message says part of the Czech population who go to the EP polls, are the more educated, which gives an advantage to the pro-European rightist parties based in large towns. The Social Democrats (CSSD) should well reflect on this, Pehe writes.

The third finding is that the Czech Republic, though allegedly Eurosceptic, has sent to the EP people most of whom are pro-European, Pehe writes.

In addition, the low turnout shows that Czech Euroscepticism is manifested as disinterest in European developments rather than a strong resentment. This is proved mainly by the failure of strongly Eurosceptical parties, Pehe writes.

Elsewhere in Pravo, Lukas Jelinek writes that supporters of an integrated Europe have beaten its opponents and the parties of the government coalition have won over the opposition.

But it is also possible to interpret the results along the traditional right-left axis. The domestic left won seven mandates, or one third of all that were available, Jelinek writes.

Does this mean that support for the left, which was a majority one a few years ago, has shrunk to one third? Is the left losing its attractiveness compared with the right? Jelinek asks.

If CSSD chairman and Prime Minister Bohuslav Sobotka were right when saying that CSSD voters, in a situation where Social Democracy is pushing through its programme in the government, did not have any great motivation to go to the EP elections, this would mean that communication between the CSSD headquarters and its supporters has failed, Jelinek writes.

Who else but Social Democrats should be able to tell citizens that it is easiest to manage the clash with neo-liberals controlled by the supra-national capital from European positions? Jelinek asks.

The Social Democrats should not ignore the fact that the rather poor result they scored in the EP elections comes at a time when the government they head is very popular, is not burdened with any scandal and the whole government coalition is spreading promises about a better future, wants to raise salaries, etc, Martin Zverina writes in Lidove noviny (LN).

The party need not be in such a comfortable position until the very end of its rule. To interpret the result with calm, to say the CSSD is not good in the Euro elections, it has never won them, or it has the same number of mandates like the biggest rivals would not indicate any big prudence, Zverina writes.

A harsher and harsher confrontation with the populism of the ANO movement as well as its own mistakes lies ahead of the CSSD, Zverina writes.

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