>Czech Republic: Blue-Green coalition bites the dust

>And as one might have expected the interesting experiment of Green-centre right coalition is no more. All three parties have given up on it. For ODS it is now a question of the “Rainbow” option of governing the country alone tolerated by all non-communist parties until early elections. The Social Democrats still want some kind of deal direct and exclusively with ODS, probably a “semi-political” caretaker government. Also leading to early elections. ODS deputies – perceiving the perceptible weakening of their party’s position – have firmly ruled out a Grand Coalition or rerun of formal power sharing along the lines of the 1998-2002 Opposition Agreement. Although a compromise budget with some agreed cuts seems likely to be passed.

Klaus has refused formally to entrust Topolánek with the task of trying to form a government, not trusting him not to lose even more to the Paroubek’s playing hard ball. This is a victory – of sorts – for the Social Democrats, although something of a failure for Czech politics and art of political compromise. In the longer run perhaps, it is an opportunity for the country to move beyond the constant patching together of ‘tolerated’ minority govenment, although I had started to admire the subtlety and complexity of the politikáření at the heart of Czech politics. Will they finally move on to winner takes all Hungarian or Polish style politics? I doubt it somehow.

Looks like we have another gruelling election to look forward to next year and lots of tricky and complicated manoeuvring over electoral reform in the meantime. Better than being governed by Robert Fico, I guess,

… but wearing – even for political anoraks such as myself.

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