Voters dealt a no-confidence verdict to the Slovenian governing coalition, while Slovenian Democratic Party won the 2018 local elections

Janez Janša (Leader of SDS): (Photo: Polona Avanzo)

The Slovenian Democratic Party achieved a fourth consecutive resounding victory at Slovenia’s seventh local elections since its independence. With more than 633 seats on the local councils, SDS increased its share of the vote for more than 20 %. Social democrats, who came in second, won less than 350 seats on the local councils. The third and fourth place was taken by Slovenian People’s Party and New Slovenia, both EPP members. Additionally, at least 54 mayors with the support of the Slovenian Democratic Party were elected. This number could increase significantly since additional 21 candidates qualified to the second round, which will be held on 2nd of December. Another positive outlook is the voter turnout, which for the first time in the country’s local election history, moderately increased.
One of the biggest takeaways from the Sunday’s local elections is also the complete defeat of the governing coalition. Six parties that form the left-wing governing coalition, received significantly fewer votes than the three EPP sister parties (SDS, NSi and the SLS). The voters dealt a decisive no-confidence verdict to the defeated minority governing coalition, supported by the extreme left Levica party. The ruling party, List of Marjan Šarec (LMŠ), wasn’t able to elect a single mayor in any of the 212 Slovenian municipalities. The humiliation was even greater since the party placed second-to-last among the parties forming a governing coalition.
Until now, no Slovenian government has ever been led by a party with such low voter support on both, the local and the state level. This, of course, raises the question of the legitimacy and the authority of the Prime Minister. It is obvious that the government is struggling. The parliamentary elections were held in June, but the first regular session of the Slovenian Parliament was held only this past Monday. Almost half a year later. Furthermore, the Government is already 40 days late to introducing the draft budget for the next two years.
Moreover, the Government can make the most serious damage with its threats of additional and higher taxation. As a result, the domestic entrepreneurs are already moving production abroad, while foreign investors are canceling hundreds of millions of investments in the Slovenian infrastructure.
After Sunday’s election result, it seems almost certain, that Slovenia will face another snap parliamentary election in the near future.