New Democracy won a sweeping victory in Sunday’s election, securing its leader Kyriakos Mitsotakis a second term in office in an eight-party Parliament which will also feature a strong contingent of far-right parties.
With 96.94 percent of the votes counted, the conservatives won 40.56 percent and 158 seats in Parliament ahead of second-placed leftist SYRIZA, with 17.84 percent and 47 seats, with a smaller tally compared to the May 21 election.
PASOK was third with 11.87 percent and 32 seats, while communist KKE won 7.67 percent and 20 seats ahead of far-right Spartiates (Spartans) with 4.69 percent and 13 seats and nationalist Greek Solution on 4.45 percent and 12 seats, and ultra-Orthodox Niki with 3.7 percent and 10 seats. Plevsi Eleftherias (Sailing for Freedom) got 3.17 percent and eight seats.
The total tally of the parties (Spartiates, Greek Solution and Niki) to the right of ND was over 12%.
Pundits are describing the eight-party Parliament as a veritable “babel” of divergent voices from across the political spectrum that could work to the detriment of its smooth functioning.
Mitsotakis said the vote is a “strong mandate to move faster on the road of the great changes this country needs.”
“The goals are high. A second term can transform Greece, with better, public free health, a powerful country on the frontline of Europe. We have the plan and the experience to make it happen,” he said.
Mitsotakis has pledged to upgrade the healthcare system, to tackle inflated prices and boost wages, but also to transform the obsolete Greek state into a European one. In other words, to speed up the decisions of the judiciary, to crack down on tax evasion, to promote meritocracy and evaluation in the public sector, and to make Greece more attractive abroad.
ND won the May polls 20 points ahead of SYRIZA, which ruled Greece from 2015 until 2019, and Sunday’s result was seen as a massive blow which could put into question the leadership of Alexis Tsipras.
However, Tsipras refuted speculation that he may step down from the helm after his won the least number of seats in Parliament since before Greece’s crippling financial in the previous decade.
“I will be judged by the members of the party,” Tsipras said in comments at SYRIZA headquarters in downtown Athens, indicating that a congress will be called within the next few months to decide on the leftists’ fate.
“SYRIZA assumes the responsibilities assigned to it by the popular vote, starting today,” he said, adding that the party “will initiate procedures for the final decision.” “A big and creative historic cycle has come to a close for SYRIZA,” Tsipras said.
The May 21 election was held under a different system, and failed to give a single party an outright majority. The system adopted in Sunday’s poll awards bonus seats to the leading party based on votes won.
( Source Kathimerini)