If you were to read what the UK and Irish mainstream press wrote about the result of the recent Greek General Election, one would have thought the Left’s performance amounted to little more than a dismal also-ran to the Right wing New Democracy[ND] and its leader Kostas Karamanlis. However this was far from the full picture as Dave Osler astutely pointed out on his web site.* If one adds up the percentages of votes cast, the left came out the poll with 51.29% of the total votes cast. Yet it is to be ND, with Kostas Karamanlis as Prime Minister who will be sworn in as the new Greek government, despite only receiving 41.84% of the vote. This fact is due to not only the vagaries of the Greek electoral system, but also the current inability of the Greek left to form an electoral alliance made up of the various left parties and factions.
As for the political parties to the left of Pasok, the two main elements increased there vote, with the Greek Communist party [KKK] gaining 22 seats in the new Parliament and the Coalition of the Radical Left [SYRIZA] 14, which is a joint increase of 18 seats since the last general election. Which is a step in the right direction and a timely reminder for the Left that if it is to have any real influence in the nation State’s of the EU, then it must enter into an Alliance/Coalition/United Front of Left parties; and until it does it will continue to fail to offer the voters a viable electoral alternative to the political Right.
The Greek Left.
Coalition of Radical Left[SYRIZA]–5.04%==14 seats.
Ecology[Green] Party–1.05%==0 seats.
The Greek Right.
New Democracy–41.84%==152 seats.
Popular Orthodox Rally–3.80%==10 seats.
* Dave Osler’s web site can be found here, http://www.davidosler.com/