The Prez yesterday signed an order declaring parliamentary elections are to be held on Sunday, September 21st. While the date is not all that suprising – elections must be held no earlier than 60 days before the end of the four-year-term of the Parliament and no later than fifteen days before – it is the last possible date for elections due to the fact that post-election procedures must be completed before the current parliament’s term ends on October 23rd.
after – it is a slight deviation from the usual interval od early October to mid-November. In 2004 elections were held on October 3rd, four years before on October 15th.
Contrary to the deleted text it turned out this morning that the September date is the normal order of things, since every election cycle the elections were held some 10-12 days prior to the previous election date, with the sole aim of the new Parliament convening before the previous Parliament’s term ends, thus insuring a smooth transition from one parliament to the other without any constitutional hickups such as a non-existing parliament. As a result, this year’s elections are being held in summer already.
This is how it looked like:
The efects of having 21 september as Election Day are many. For starters, it means that what is promising to be a heated, bloody and viscious campaing with a lot punches below the belt will be over by the time the sun is still high up in the sky and that the proverbial “Hot Political Autumn” (a classic of Slovene journailsm) will actually be a Long Hot Summer, as the campaign will officialy start on August 21st, just at people will slowly start returning from the holidays and start worrying about getting their kids all the school gear necesary and will end on the last day of summer.
Secondly, moving up the election schedule means that the government will have a little less time to bask in the glory of the EU presidency, which admittedly turned sour late in the game on the account of the Irish no (a post on this was scheduled for today, but is rescheduled for tommorow). Alternatively, if things went really bad for the government – a bursting real-estate bubble, increasing oil prices, incompetent ministers, – having elections a week or two earlier might be a good thing, as it will considerably shorten the time-frame avaliable to the opposition for attakcing the government.
And thirdly, Borut Pahor will have a nice natural tan he’ll be working on entire summer.
So, there you have it. The date is set, the clock is ticking (on this blog as well, see the sidebar) and the intricacies of Slovene electoral system will be exlpained in one of the upcoming posts.
EDIT: It turns out that I’m not the only one who cannot the grip of electoral date mathematics 😀 Todays’s Dnevnik ran a story whose title reads “85 days till elections“. As you can see on your left, elections are due in ninety-six days 😉