By: Vida Kocjan
This year, voters in the Republic of Slovenia will go to the polls three times, namely to the National Assembly, local or municipal, and presidential elections. At the end of 2022, elections to the National Council of the Republic of Slovenia will also take place.
Elections to the National Assembly are expected to take place on the first possible date, April 24th, 2022. They will be called by the President of the Republic Borut Pahor in February, he announced in early November. Elections will be regular as always, when the government was led by Janez Janša, who has never thrown in the towel. The last time there were regular elections was in 2008, then there were always preliminary elections, and governments were led by the faces of the transitional left. The last (preliminary) parliamentary elections were on June 3rd, 2018.
The first possible date for the presidential election is September 11th, and the last is November 6th, 2022. Local elections for members of municipal councils and mayors will be held on November 20th, 2022 (the third Sunday in November, as required by law). In the case of mayors, a second round of elections may be held in individual municipalities. In the autumn of 2022, general elections of members of the National Council will be held – representatives of employers, employees, farmers, craftsmen and independent professions and non-economic activities.
Super-election year 2022
The coming year will be a super-election year. The Prime Minister Janez Janša announced that the government still has a lot of work to do before the elections and will do a lot by then. The coalition already knows exactly what needs to be done in the country even after the elections, where investment injustices from the past need to be corrected and where are the points where development can be accelerated. One of the main goals of the current coalition is also the decentralisation of Slovenia.
Janez Janša, Prime Minister and President of the largest political and in recent years victorious party SDS, emphasised that progress is possible only through cooperation, the search for common interests and not exclusion, which is emphasised by the KUL coalition (SD, LMŠ, Levica and SAB, including delinquents).
While KUL is playing around, the ruling coalition (SDS, SMC or Konkretno and NSi), with the support of the constructive work of the opposition from the ranks of the SNS, DeSUS and MPs of nationalities, is working with all its might. The last leader of the Slovene Communist Party, Milan Kučan, is also deeply involved in this, announcing that the elections on April 24th, 2022, will “decide on the return of democracy”. Janez Janša also agrees with this, with the addition: “The elections will decide whether democracy will finally return to those who will vote, and the legislature and the executive power to those who will form the parliament and government on the basis of the election result.”
In a recent interview with Demokracija, Janša said that next year’s elections would “indirectly decide on the end of a perverted situation in which a handful of first-class people, led by the former president of the totalitarian party, declare themselves the people, where despite the pandemic, they are jumping and cycling around squares as well as threatening with death to all who think otherwise. With the support of privatised media, the judiciary and the prosecution.”
The left would like to take us back to the times of communism
Theologian Ivan Štuhec warns that the political left would like to take us back to the times of communism, saying that all extremist parties have always strived to come to power – first legally and according to democratic rules, but if that did not work also with violence. The Kul company holds the bag for such an outcome.
Štuhec also states that the current government coalition has carried out the presidency of the EU Council in terms of organisation and content. Leftists can only build their critique on ideological constructs and lies. The vast majority of Ministers have built a reputation among their colleagues despite the media bombardment that Tanja Fajon staged at the beginning and during the Slovenian term with the help of her journalist colleagues at home and abroad. But the vast majority of the electorate does not see or understand this; the reason for this is in the media landscape, which is far from professionalism and political independence.
With the new year higher pensions
Podpis: At the beginning of 2022, a 4% increase in pensions is planned, while care allowances in homes for the elderly and care recipients remain the same.
The Council of the Pension and Disability Insurance Institute (ZPIZ) has adopted the Financial Plan for 2022, which shows a 4% adjustment of pensions and other benefits. The adjustment or increase will be in February 2022 with the settlement for January 2022. In the case of allowances for assistance and care, the adjustment is planned for March 2022 in the amount of 2.5 percent. The financial plan must be approved by the government. The council of the institute also proposes that disability benefits be coordinated in the same way as the allowance for assistance and care. At the same time, the Long-Term Care Act came into force, which stipulates, among other things, that higher labour costs for employees in nursing homes will be covered from the state budget. Consequently, this means that there will be no higher benefits at the beginning of the year than has been the case in previous years. The amounts for home help also remain unchanged. It is a great success of the ruling coalition.
Janez Janša: “If the KUL coalition rules again, they will introduce food and petrol on vouchers instead of tourist vouchers”
Janez Janša, President of the SDS and the Government of the Republic of Slovenia: “The elections will decide whether the money will go to the people who create it or to the non-governmental authorities at Metelkova 6, a paramilitary of the Kul, who have not yet contributed to any national achievement and spent tens of millions of euros from workers, entrepreneurs, and retirees. According to what we have seen, we can justifiably fear that if the KUL coalition rules, they will introduce food and petrol on vouchers instead of tourist vouchers.”
Political analysts on the coming year 2022
Next year will be a super-election year. What do you expect from it? Do you dare to predict who will win? Can it be expected that people will support the so-called new faces again?
Peter Jančič: Kučan’s last battle for power
Peter Jančič, journalist and editor of the Siol.Net portal: “This election is possibly the last great battle of my generation,” said the former head of the totalitarian regime, and later elected president Milan Kučan, about the elections next year. His left bloc lost the last election. However, Kučan’s losers managed to hold on to power with the minority government of Marjan Šarec for a short time, until Šarec gave up and resigned. Conflicts for power in the past have been uncompromising and even abused the judiciary to imprison then-favourite Janez Janša during the campaign before the 2014 elections and keep the ‘Kučan’s generation’ in power. Abuses of state institutions are expected this year as well. But elections, if conducted fairly, are a holiday for all people who believe in freedom and a better tomorrow. We have only been able to choose our own leaders for 30 years since we abolished the dictatorship. And we must protect that freedom. The dilemma is true, as Kučan describes it: “Will Slovenia succeed in going in the right, democratic direction, or will it go into dictatorship.” We have already been in a dictatorship. It is time to finally retire Kučan’s generation, which ruled in this way.
Sebastjan Jeretič: “The possible entry of Robert Golob could consolidate or devour most of the KUL bloc”
Sebastjan Jeretič, political strategist and analyst: “It is still too early to announce the results of the parliamentary elections. First, the entire offer needs to be stabilised and positioned, however, now many questions are still open. It is clear that the KUL bloc concreted itself in the left corner with its radicalism and destructiveness. The possible entry of Robert Golob could consolidate or devour most of the KUL bloc, as polls show that their voters are longing for a new face. Then there will be the important question of how much added value it can bring in a more moderate environment. Given the start of the campaign with talk of fascism and radical criticism, the breakthrough will be difficult to achieve, as these stories convince only the most radical. On the right, there will be a campaign in the coming months to show results, especially economic and investment ones, which will first stabilise the electorate and then also recoup that part that may have been angry and disappointed. The biggest crowd will be in the middle with many fragmented attempts, as well as with possibly the main point, the movement Povežimo Slovenijo. The concept of connecting various programmatic and local political figures will most likely significantly determine the direction of the future government, as Povežimo Slovenijo movement will be an inevitable pillar of any coalition due to its positioning.”
Andrej Aplenc: “SDS will win the elections with a big advantage”
Andrej Aplenc, co-founders of the Institute for the Revival of Civil Society, author of several books and columnist: “The SDS will win the elections in April next year with a big advantage. The vast majority of voters are aware of the financial benefits of the so-called covid laws passed by the government. They know that we have very low unemployment, that economic growth is higher than ever, and that the outlook for the future is very good. We are all more than fed up with the new faces launched by left-wing post-communists in every election. The new faces now announced, however, are all multi-millionaires. So far, no one has explained how this goes together with the Social Democrats.”
France Cukjati: “The agenda of lies and hatred is becoming more and more concrete, but also more and more exposed. And that is the light at the end of the tunnel.”
France Cukjati, President of the Assembly for the Republic: “Since last March, we have been experiencing an aggressive and grounded election campaign from the left: from plotting scandals over the purchase of protective equipment, shouting “death to Janšism”, and disgracing Slovenia abroad all the way to constant promise of exclusion. Even in the finals, the campaign will not fundamentally change. Maybe just some less catchy word. The deep “rule of law” certainly has a new Patria or some old hidden records ready. The agenda of lies and hatred is becoming more and more concrete, but also more and more exposed. And that is the light at the end of the tunnel. Only when the disease is sufficiently revealed can a person embark on the path of recovery!”
Ivan Štuhec: “The year 2022 will be decisive and fatal for the future of Europe and Slovenia in many ways. That is what it is about!”
Ivan Štuhec, Roman Catholic priest, theologian and philosopher of morals, writer: “A possible march to power of parties under the command of the Levica party would take us back to the time before independence. This possibility exists if the Levica was a relative winner within the KUL. If the Slovene electorate body decides that this is the future for the Slovene state, we can prepare for a new exodus, first economic and then political. If SD had followed Pahor’s path, it could have presented one of the strong pillars in this third block today. However, now they are counting on a relative victory within Kul and a traffic light coalition following the German example. In this case, they will have a major substantive problem in the economic field, how to coordinate the Levica party and which of the parties from the third bloc to put in a potential coalition. Aware of this, they have launched a campaign to form a new party, which would be led to the elections by the pure-blooded Social Democrat and liberal Golob with his half-million annual salary.”
Miloš Čirič: “Only one party can be calm in this election”
Miloš Čirič, political analyst: “Although it is a super-election year, the parliamentary elections are crucial for what will happen to Slovenia. Either it will be restructured and maintained or even improved competitiveness, or we will lag behind and regret it for a long time, as the Catalans are doing about independence. The world is changing drastically and will not wait for us. In this election, only one party can be calm. The reach of the SDS ranges between 20 and 30 percent – depending on voter turnout. But it has never gone to the polls from such a position as it does now. NSi has a range of between 5 and 10 percent. A party with the potential for more, but it still has a few things to clear up, so I think it will only then shine in full splendour. With the signing of the KUL coalition, the participating parties have tied their “hands” and the elections themselves would already be a serious sobering up, especially since they are only acting in anger. Anger, however, is not appealing to others except the angry. Therefore, they are in no way capable of achieving a breakthrough. Golob’s entry will further worsen their position. According to the two surveys I have seen, it literally sucks LMŠ, SAB and DeSUS and a good chunk of SD and a little of Levica. Very little, however, interferes among the so-called undecided voters, suggesting that it will just shuffle the cards on the left. You can also see how uneasy they look at him in the mentioned parties in the comments of their supporters in Večer, Delo and Dnevnik. The movement Povežimo Slovenijo has a very positive trend and is the only serious intervention among previously undecided voters. It is also interesting to note that its constituents are by far the most positive, which is also the emotion that is most gravitationally attractive. That is why I am announcing a two-digit number for the movement Povežimo Slovenijo. Also because they are extremely active in the field. There are also many other parties for which there will not be enough attention at key moments. Namely, people start to take a serious interest in politics only a month or two before the elections. Experience shows that there will not be enough public attention for anything more than the parties and the movement. Opportunities with lower participation, as it now seems, have only those who will work hard in the field, e.g. SNS and Naša dežela.”