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Mar 21, 2023
Greece Plans to Hold General Elections in May, Premier Says
(Bloomberg) -- Greece’s general elections will take place in May, a few weeks before Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis’s term in office officially ends in early July.
“I can tell you for sure that the elections will be held in May,” Mitsotakis said late Tuesday in an interview with Alpha TV, according to a transcript sent by his office. Holding the vote in July wouldn’t work because it’s very likely that a second ballot may be needed, he said.
The decision follows the country’s worst-ever train crash three weeks ago that left 57 people dead. Mitsotakis has previously only said that the elections will take place in the spring. A reported plan to hold a snap ballot April 9 has already been canceled due to the deadly crash.
Regardless of when elections take place, the introduction of a proportional representation system will make it difficult for a single party to form a government straight away. That will most likely mean a second ballot a month later, probably in early July, which will happen under a semi-proportional system that makes it easier to form a majority.
While the prime minister’s center-right New Democracy party leads in all polls conducted after the train accident, its margin over the leftist Syriza party of former Premier Alexis Tsipras has dropped to around 3 percentage points amid mounting anger over the accident.
Syriza hasn’t benefited from the fall in support for the ruling party with people planning to vote for smaller parties or joining the ranks of undecided voters, according to the polls.
©2023 Bloomberg L.P.
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