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Czech election campaign: confrontational and scary

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Czech political parties have less than two weeks to convince the citizens to vote for them in the upcoming EU polls scheduled for 5 and 6 June. Last week, the Czech Television and the Czech Radio began broadcasting the parties’ election spots. The two biggest parties have chosen a confrontational approach. While the ČSSD is calling on people not to allow the government of Mirek Topolánek again, the ODS is offering “a solution rather than scaring“.

The Greens have chosen a different target. In their election video, the party features eurosceptic president Klaus as a rooster standing on a fence and crowing against Europe, with one deputy sharpening an axe and the party leader Bursík asking him not to strike. Green Party candidate Kateřina Jacques builds her campaign based on her recent faux pas in a public television debate when she got caught not knowing the answer to what biomass is.

And the nationalist National Party got into a legal fight with the public television broadcaster who banned the party’s spot offering “a final solution to the Roma issue”.

All candidates are entitled to a certain number of hours for their election spots in public media. But is it really worth it? Opinion public experts say the impact is minor. And it would probably need a slightly different approach to convince the Czechs (who, according to the polls, do not consider the EU elections that important) that it is in their best interest to take part in the vote.

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