Czechia’s Ruling Coalition Wins Election in Senate

Government coalition leaders the Civic Democrats have emerged as the biggest winners of elections to one-third of the seats in the Czech Senate, taking eight of the 27 mandates contested.

Second-round, two-candidate runoffs were held in 24 constituencies on Friday and Saturday after three candidates won seats by gaining more than 50 percent in last weekend’s first round.

Overall, the ruling coalition parties won 18 seats in the ballot.

Recent large demonstrations against the Czech government due to its handling of the energy crisis and its support for Ukraine didn’t translate into gains for the opposition.

Former populist Prime Minister Andrej Babis called the ballot a referendum about the government but his centrist ANO movement won only three seats. The major anti-migrant party, Freedom and Direct Democracy remained without a single seat in the upper house.

Parliament´s lower house dominates the legislative process, but the Senate plays an important role in passing constitutional amendments and approving Constitutional Court judges.

The current Czech government firmly stands behind Ukraine after it was invaded by Russia.

The country has donated arms, including heavy weapons, to the Ukrainian armed forces and welcomed some 430,000 refugees from Ukraine.

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