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‘Slovak, not Brussels Social Democracy’
‘Slovak, not Brussels Social Democracy’

Europeanization/De-Europeanization and the Ideological Development of Smer-SD Before 2020 Parliamentary Elections in Slovakia

Author(s): Juraj Marušiak
Subject(s): Politics / Political Sciences, Social Sciences, Electoral systems
Published by: Masarykova univerzita
Keywords: Slovakia; parliamentary elections 2020; Smer-SD; social democracy; Europeanization; de-Europeanization

Summary/Abstract: This paper is focused on the evolution of the ideology of Smer - Social Democracy (Smer-SD) party and its positions on European integration before the political elections in Slovakia in February 2020. As the ‘social-democratization’ of Smer-SD was the result of party’s Europeanization, the article explores the dimensions of de-Europeanization in the politics of this party in 2017–2020. Since 2006, Smer-SD has occupied a dominant position among political parties in Slovakia. However, a substantive decline in the electoral support of the party took place after 2016. Smer-SD faced a significant political challenge during the political crisis after the assassination of the journalist Ján Kuciak and his fiancée Martina Kušnírová in February 2018. The result was the resignation of Prime Minister Robert Fico. The appointment of party vice chairman Peter Pellegrini as Prime Minister created a new situation within the party, as for the first time the positions of Prime Minister and head of the party were separated. The political crisis in 2018 revealed the presence of internal conflicts within the party and the weakening of the authority of its chairman, Robert Fico. The establishment of two centres of power within the party resulted in competition between Fico and Pellegrini and, finally, in June 2020, a split, as Pellegrini announced the founding of a new political party.

  • Issue Year: XXVIII/2021
  • Issue No: 1
  • Page Range: 37-58
  • Page Count: 21
  • Language: English