Czech KSČM gaining in polls

The Communists and Christian Democrats stand to gain the most from the current disillusion with Czech politics, STEM poll shows

Growing disillusion with politics has left many Czechs uncertain of which party to vote for — if at all — with support for the center-right coalition government in particular continuing to slide, a new poll by the STEM agency shows.

The smallest coalition partner, Public Affairs (VV) — hurt by the likely prosecution of its founder and paymaster Vít Bárta on bribery charges — is polling below the required 5 percent level to return to the lower house of parliament.

VV’s partners, the Civic Democrats (ODS) of Prime Minister Petr Nečas and TOP 09, are also down in the polls, but likely voters are not flocking to the main opposition Social Democrats (ČSSD), either.

“In this situation, the Communists [KSČM] are benefiting, and the Christian Democrats (KDU-ČSL) also have a chance of overcoming the five-percent threshold, thanks to its solid core [of conservative voters],” STEM said.

According to the agency’s projections, excluding undecided voters, if elections were held today, the KSČM could win 38 mandates in the 200-member lower house of Parliament (Chamber of Deputies) and the ČSSD 87 — for a total of 125 to a possible left-wing coalition — while TOP 09 would capture 30 seats and the ODS 45 — for a total of just 75.

The upstart VV party had gained 24 mandates in the May 2010 elections, but two of its deputies have since left the party. The KSČM currently have 26 seats and the ČSSD 56 (for a total of 82), the ODS 53, and TOP 09 have 41.

Asked by STEM which party they would vote for, the majority of respondents named the ČSSD, followed by “don’t know,” while one in ten said “none.” The breakdown of party preference according to STEM is as follows:

ČSSD (25.8%)
‘Don’t know’ (15.6%)
ODS (12.9%)
KSČM (11.8%)
‘None’ (10.5%)
TOP 09 (9.9%)
VV (3.2%)
KDU-ČSL (2.7%)
Greens (2.5%)
‘Other parties’ (2.4%)
Sovereignty (1.8%)
SPOZ (0.9%)