Elections Greece

Big win for right-wing in Greek elections

| 2023-06-26 2 min read

Big win for right-wing in Greek elections

Reading Time: 2 minutes

Greek conservative leader Kyriakos Mitsotakis’s gamble paid off on Sunday, as he won a landslide victory in the country’s second election in five weeks.

When Mitsotakis beat the opposition centre-left Syriza party in May, his party fell just short of a majority in the 300-seat parliament. He then called another snap election for Sunday in the hope of forming a stable, one-party government.

Sunday’s result vindicated that decision, as his New Democracy party (ND) took 40.5% of the vote, almost 23 points ahead of Syriza, (17.8% and 47 seats), with most of the votes counted. Unlike in May, Sunday’s election used a “majority bonus system”, which increased the possibility of a majority government.

Results of Greek election, June 1023/ Souce: leftiestats

According to observers, Mitsotakis has brought the Greek economy back on the path of stability and growth after many bruising years that included a severe debt crisis and three international bailouts.

“ND is today the most powerful centre-right party in Europe,” he said at an election victory party in Athens, adding that major reforms will now proceed at pace.

“Our citizens have given us a strong order to move on the path of great changes the country needs. I promise you that I will be prime minister of all Greeks, because problems have no colour, and citizens should feel the state is by their side in every difficulty,” he said.

Earlier in the day he had urged voters to “do their duty with maturity (and) vote for their personal welfare, for their own good, for the good of their family (and) for a stable homeland, which will provide, in the end, conditions of prosperity and social equality for all Greek women and for all Greeks.”

Greek June 2023 election map/ Source: Interior Ministry

Overall the results represented Greece’s biggest shift the right since the restoration of independence in 1974. Four fringe parties — mainly from the far-right — passed the 3% threshold to enter parliament. In the wake of the recent emergence of the neo-Nazi Spartans (4.69%) and the strongly-religious NIKI, radical right parties now hold 12% of seats, with the ultra-nationalist, pro-Russian Greek Solution (4.5%).

On the left, the socialist PASOK party won 11.9% and 32 seats, failing to displace Syriza as the main opposition, and the communist KKE took 7.6% and 20 seats. Course of Freedom, led by former Syriza member Zoi Konstantopoulou, got 3.1%. The participation rate was at 52.7%, down 8% from May, the Interior Ministry reported.

Syriza leader Alexis Tsipras, who served as prime minister from 2015-19, deflected speculation about his future as leader, saying this will be down to party members.