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Czech News in English » News » Politics » HN: ČSSD seeks advise of US firm in election campaign

HN: ČSSD seeks advise of US firm in election campaign

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Prague, Jan 19 (CTK) – Czech Prime Minister and Social Democrat (CSSD) head Bohuslav Sobotka has spoken to representatives of the Washington STG company to see how it could help the CSSD prepare for the October general election, daily Hospodarske noviny (HN) wrote on Thursday.

The agency also helped Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama in their election campaigns.

HN writes that the CSSD did not seek assistance of foreign advisers in the past six years, but it considers the forthcoming election to be of key importance.

The CSSD’s voter support has been dramatically declining since it lost regional and Senate elections last October, while its major rival and government partner, the ANO movement of Finance Minister Andrej Babis has been strongly popular with voters.

Dan Kannine, STG vice-president for public campaigns, has told E15 server that the first contact with the CSSD occurred before Christmas, after the U.S. presidential election, HN writes.

Until now, contact between STG and the CSSD was loser. They got to know one another through another leading U.S. company, PSB, which was preparing the CSSD’s campaigns in 2006 and 2010, when the party was headed by Jiri Paroubek. The party did not win either election.

At that time, Jan Birke, CSSD lawmaker, now also mayor of Nachod, east Bohemia, who became the party’s election manager last week, got acquainted with the style of work of foreign advisors.

He and Sobotka are now in contact with STG representatives. HN writes that Sobotka was to meet them on Wednesday.

According to HN, the CSSD will seek advise on the choice of programme themes and on how to communicate their ideas to people and how to please them.

STG is to help the CSSD with communication in public places and mainly on social networks.

The CSSD has until now stressed aid to families with children and seniors and it hopes the promise to raise the salaries of employees could help it score political points, HN writes.

CSSD deputy group head Roman Sklenak has said the party will probably unleash its election campaign at the end of May and June.

According to the law, the whole campaign may not cost more than 90 million crowns.

HN writes, referring to its sources, that a part of the CSSD is considering hiring only individual advisors, not the more expensive comprehensive services of STG.

ANO has similar plans. It has used the experience of Alexander Braun in the long term. He previously worked with the above PSB agency. ANO enlisted his services in 2013 and it is going to cooperate with him in preparations for the October general election again, HN writes.

The junior government Christian Democrats (KDU-CSL) are not going to use assistance of any foreign experts, chairman Pavel Belobradek has said, HN writes.

It writes that one of the three members of the party’s election staff, Vaclav Platenik, has experience from campaigns abroad.

Belobradek said his party’s election campaign will be economical.

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