Is Slovenia Returning to the EU Core?

Slovenia is poised to break away from the successive illiberal victories in Hungary and Serbia

21 April 2022

Albin Sybera

Visegrad Insight Fellow

After the electoral victories of Viktor Orbán and Aleksandar Vučić earlier this month, a consolation prize in Slovenia may be just around the corner for the EU. 

On Monday one of the key debates featuring leaders of the eight parties including Prime Minister Janez Janša performing best in the pre-election polls took place at the largest commercial station in the country, POP TV.

With the studio crew getting ready for the live broadcast, incumbent Prime Minister Janša was the last one to take a position at his stand. As PM Janša was passing the stand where Luka Mesec, leader of the leftwing opposition party Levice (Left), was sending text messages on his mobile phone, Janša shook his head sending gestures across the television studio to suggest that his rival’s attention was elsewhere.

Pre-election debate on POPTV with all main candidates. Photo by Albin Sybera

In many ways, the entrée epitomised the culminating election campaign as well as Monday’s debate including the generational struggle between the two politicians. Mesec and Levice were being targeted by Janša’s and his coalition partner’s rhetoric, but it was the man not physically present in the studio who is the real challenger, best positioned to unseat Janša’s cabinet whose approval ratings have been low. 

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Albin Sybera

Visegrad Insight Fellow

Visegrad Insight Fellow. Albin is a freelance journalist, consultant and a former clerk at the State Environmental Fund of the Czech Republic. Besides Visegrad Insight, his texts can be also found at Britske listy or Balkan Insight.

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