Clio wrote:...One small fact, however, makes the result worth more than a cynical shrug. The electorate has rejected Golden Dawn and the party no longer has MPs in the Vouli legitimising its thuggery.
I couldn't agree more, Clio. They were only just under the 3 % threshold so it was a close thing. Sadly, I suspect that if they hadn't been fighting a court case for running a criminal gang they might have got over the threshold. I was just about to write a post on the Greek election but got distracted.
For anybody interested, New Democracy won an outright majority with a total of 158 seats. It is worth noting that Greece has a slightly distorted proportional representation system. Only 250 seats are contested and whichever party gets the biggest share of the votes cast gets allocated the other 50 seats. It is an attempt to get the benefits of PR, i.e. small parties do get some seats, with the benefits of first past the post, i.e. you tend to get majority governments. This system is (was?) in the process of being abolished and replaced by a more pure PR system but that could not be got through in time for this election. That means on votes cast ND won 108 seats out of 250. With a majority of 16 and a mixture of parties with very differing views opposing them I would have thought they should be able to get through virtually whatever policy programme they want. I would guess that "It's our turn to receive the bribes again" will be top of the list. His other proposals are to boost investment and cut taxes, while, of course, abiding by all the constraints imposed by Greece's creditors. Good luck with that sunshine.
Syriza was still second with 86 seats so 22 behind ND; quite a resounding defeat but not unexpected. Syriza still hold Crete. In Heraklion Syriza won by 13 % and in Chania by just over 3 % but it was much closer in Rethymnon with 0.4 % and Lassithi with only 0.25 %.
KINAL, which is a centre left coalition but mainly the rump of what was PASOK, were in third place with 22 seats. KKE, the main communist party, were fourth with 15 seats and about their normal share of the vote. Elliniki Lisi, which is a relatively new right wing pro-church populist party that has more or less replaced LAOS, were fifth with 10 seats. Finally MeRA25 came sixth with 9 seats. It is a new left wing party founded by Varoufakis, who was the Syriza finance minister who tried to argue for a completely different deal with the EU and failed. I am told he has some serious non-politicians standing as candidates but I don't have any specifics. I can't see them having much influence with ND's majority.
It's worth having a look at the names of the minor communist parties. It is reminiscent of "The Life of Brian" and the People's Front of Judea.
PS When I wrote the above post I must confess I didn't know anything about Elliniki Lisi. I have since found this article
, which, although written before the election, gives a pretty good picture of what they are like. Looks like their leader used his own tele-marketing show to sell exclusive copies of Jesus' handwritten letters. I'm shocked. I thought I had the only copies of them? I'm now starting to worry about my authentic toe nail clippings. Could they be fakes? It looks like this might be where the Golden Dawn vote went to, Clio.