The Czech Social Democratic Party (CSSD) increased its majority in the Senate following elections this month for one third of the seats in the upper house. CSSD now holds 46 out of 81 Senate seats. In addition, the Greens won their first Senate seat, and independents of various political hue were elected – and the centre-right Civic Democrats (ODS) now have the fewest number of Senators ever.
In addition, the Social Democrats emerged as the largest party in nine out of the country’s 13 regional assemblies, and coalition negotiations are currently under way. The ODS won the largest number of seats in only one of the regions. Though CSSD did not match its landslide in the 2008 regional elections (following aggressive campaigning against controversial hospital charges introduced by the centre-right government), it remains the strongest force in regional government. These elections also saw strong gains by the Communist party.
These results, whilst not directly affecting the central government, which relies on its majority in the lower house of parliament, will pile up the pressure on Prime Minister Petr Necas, whose government is riven by divisions, including within his own Civic Democratic Party.
All the best,
Co-founder of Labour Friends of the Czech Republic