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Sunday, May 06, 2012 11:55 AM


Splintering of Greece: Will Anyone Rule? Exit Poll Has Anti-Bailout Party in Second Place


Preliminary exit polls are not good for the pro-austerity, keep Greece in the Eurozone at any cost coalition as 3 parties vie for top post

An exit poll commissioned by Greek media shows three parties are vying for the top spot in the country's critical parliamentary elections, with no definitive front-runner and none gaining enough votes to form a government.

According to the exit poll, the conservative New Democracy party will get between 17 percent and 20 percent; the formerly majority socialist PASOK between 14 percent and 17 percent, and the left-wing Radical Left Coalition, or Syriza, between 15.5 percent and 18.5 percent.

The extreme right-wing Golden Dawn is projected to win enough votes to enter parliament, with between 6 percent and 8 percent, well above the necessary 3 percent threshold.
It is widely expected that New Democracy and PASOK will combine to form a coalition. Both want to stay with the Euro. However, New Democracy wants changes made to agreed upon austerity measures.

PASOK leader Evangelos Venizelos is nothing but a tool for the eurocrat clowns and appears to be a big loser in the elections vs expectations just a few short weeks ago.

Exit Poll Has Anti-Bailout Party in Second Place

Other exit polls show the Radical Left Coalition (Syriza) at 16-19%. Bloomberg reports New Democracy Slightly Ahead in Greek Election, Exit Poll Shows
Antonis Samaras’s New Democracy party showed a slight lead in Greek elections today, receiving between 17 percent and 20 percent of the vote, an exit poll forecast.

Anti-bailout party Syriza got between 16 percent and 19 percent, according to the exit poll broadcast on state-run television NET. Socialist Pasok got between 14 percent and 17 percent, according to the poll.
Spotlight on the Radical Left

The Wall Street Journal proclaims Greek Leftist Comes Into His Own
Young and charismatic, Alexis Tsipras may be the man to watch on the Greek political scene.

The 37-year-old, who’s an engineer by training, heads the Coalition of the Radical Left — or Syriza — an umbrella left-wing party that brings together various leftist strands ranging from Communist to Social-democrat and environmentalist groups.

His party has seen its polling figures rise in recent weeks, ahead of the May 6 elections. The last polls—before a two week blackout period imposed ahead of Sunday’s vote–showed Syriza poised to become the third largest party for the first time in its history, garnering on average above 10% of the popular vote.

Mr. Tsipras advocates the annulment of Greece’s second bailout program with the fiscal-consolidation and structural-reform policies attached to it.

In a recent interview with a Greek website, Mr. Tsipras said the country was becoming a “protectorate, a colony” under the tough measures that Greece’s troika of creditors–the European Union, the European Central Bank and the International Monetary Fund–demand to continue funding the country’s bailout.

“It is not our choice to leave the euro. But the sacrifices made by the Greek people are not for the euro, they are for oligarchs, the plutocrats, the big capital,” he said in the interview, adding that these sacrifices were made so that “[German Chancellor Angela] Mrs. Merkel and the northern countries benefit and run surpluses and the southerners run deficits.”

Tsipras could well find himself leading the main opposition party after the elections, if Pasok and New Democracy form a coalition government. If Syriza does get around 12%, a realistic prospect according to Nikolakopoulos, that would translate to roughly 30 deputies in a highly-fragmented, 300-seat parliament. That would put the young party leader in a strong position to continue spreading his anti-austerity message.
The WSJ article was written three days ago. If exit polls are accurate, the Radical Left will not be in third place with 10% of the vote, but rather second place with perhaps as much as 18 or even 19 percent of the vote.

It is going to be very difficult forming a coalition government out of this splintered mess.

Mike "Mish" Shedlock
http://globaleconomicanalysis.blogspot.com
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