Angelos Stangos ANGELOS STANGOS

A booby-trapped country

COMMENT

TAGS: Politics

All of the most recent public opinion polls that have been conducted in Greece appear to support what analysts have been saying, that New Democracy will quite likely win the next general election, whenever it will be called. The most recent poll, conducted by the University of Macedonia, indicates that the lead New Democracy has over SYRIZA has grown further.

It has SYRIZA at 15 percent support, while New Democracy is up to 33 percent. What these kinds of numbers indicate is that there is a greater likelihood the conservatives could even win by enough to govern alone, without having to form a coalition with another party. If, however, ND did have to find a coalition partner, recent public opinion polls suggest that partner should be none other than the Democratic Alignment party.

Many more things can be said about what could happen in the following elections. No matter what is said, or what predictions are made at this point, however, they will probably be premature. The very same pollsters who conduct such surveys remind us at every opportunity – of course so that they can provide cover for themselves against criticism – that they are a snapshot of the people’s voting intentions at the moment they are conducted. It is therefore too early to make assessments and analysis about elections that may not happen for another 15 months, as it appears the government intends to complete its mandate in full – of course, without excluding the possibility of general elections happening sooner than that.

With that in mind, the large lead that New Democracy has over SYRIZA in the opinion polls indicate could be narrower when elections do indeed happen. The governing party appears determined to deliver a strong pre-election fight, which will cause extreme polarization. It is already preparing in every way it can. There are plenty of clues indicating this every day. The amendment brought to Parliament to stop the strike by the union representing municipal workers POE-OTA is an indication of its direction. The amendment is essentially a promise to fill permanent positions without age limits, while guaranteeing that the privatization of garbage collection will not be allowed.

What’s most important though, is that the current government is booby-trapping the country with external promises (to the creditors) while at the same time conducting its internal decisions and lawmaking with the view of its most likely defeat in the next elections. It will do anything it can to make it more difficult for the next government to survive.

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