Party preferences in September 2004

All respondents having the right to vote were asked an open question (i.e. without a list of political parties being used) investigating which party they would vote for if an election to the Chamber of Deputies took place the following week. The structure of the answers given is summarised in the table.

The question ‘Imagine that an election to the Chamber of Deputies is held next week. Would you participate?’ was answered yes by 60% of those surveyed having the right to vote (‘definitely yes’ by 28% and ‘probably yes’ by 32%), while 31% said no (17% ‘probably not’ and 14% ‘definitely not’) and 9% did not know.

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Willingness to participate in the election

The results indicate that people attach a relatively greater importance to elections to the Chamber of Deputies than to elections to the European Parliament. Not only do citizens express more willingness to participate in elections to the Chamber of Deputies (66%) than to the European Parliament (57%), they also more frequently consider a high turnout a positive in case of national elections (70%) than in case of European elections (61%).

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Why did people ignore the election to the European Parliament?

In a June survey of the Public Opinion Research Centre, the respondents who did not participate in the election to the European Parliament were asked to clarify their reasons.

Roughly a fifth of the polled citizens (21%) said that they had not participated in the election because they were dissatisfied with politics, a slightly smaller percentage said they did not know the candidates and that they felt their vote ‘could not decide anything’ (18 and 17% respectively), 13% of respondents said they had been outside their place of residence and roughly a tenth of those surveyed did not take interest in the European Union (or the European Parliament), politics in general or said they disagreed with the accession to the EU.

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Political parties and the European integration as seen by the Czech public

A June survey by the Public Opinion Research Centre included, inter alia, an aggregate of questions investigating what the Czech public thinks about political parties and the European integration process. Almost a third of Czech citizens over 18 years of age sympathise with no political party. Less than a quarter of respondents sympathise with the ODS, while 13% of those polled sympathise with the KSCM and 9% with the CSSD.

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Citizen interest in the election to the European Parliament

In a June 2004 survey of the Public Opinion Research Centre, the respondents were asked to say how often over the last four weeks before the election to the European Parliament they had paid attention to the activities described in table 1. Roughly a half of the polled citizens said that they had ‘sometimes’ watched the information about the European election on TV, read about it in newspapers and discussed it with friends or family.

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Party preferences in June

All respondents having the right to vote were asked an open question (i.e. without a list of political parties being used) investigating which party they would vote for if an election to the Chamber of Deputies took place the following week. The structure of the answers given is summarised in the table.

The question ‘Imagine that an election to the Chamber of Deputies is held next week. Would you participate?’ was answered yes by 63% of those surveyed having the right to vote (‘definitely yes’ by 32% and ‘probably yes’ by 31%), while 30% said no (15% ‘probably not’ and 15% ‘definitely not’) and 7% did not know.

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Voter’s decision-making process in the first European election

When choosing whom to vote for in the European election, the electorate is going to attach more importance to opinions on problems in the Czech Republic than to the party or personality of candidates.

The vast majority of those who are going to vote – 8 out of 10 – are persuaded that the party of their choice will get into the European Parliament. 10% of those polled were of the opinion that the party of their choice will not sit in the European Parliament, and the same percentage did not know.

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Party preferences in May 2004

All respondents having the right to vote were asked an open question (i.e. without a list of political parties being used) investigating which party they would vote for if an election to the Chamber of Deputies took place the following week. The structure of the answers given is summarised in the table (in %).

The question ‘Imagine that an election to the Chamber of Deputies is held next week.

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Who are we going to vote for in the EP election?

All respondents eligible to vote were asked a closed question about which political party they are going to vote for in the European Parliament election. The respondents were shown complete candidate lists of all parties. The total structure of the answers given is summarised in the table.

In May 2004, 63% of Czech citizens expressed willingness to participate in the election to the European Parliament.

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Contribution of the Visegrad 4 group to Europe

Czechs think that their cheap labour force and tourist attractions will be the major contributions to the European Union. Only a fraction of the population said that our traditions, moral values, religion, quality industrial products or quality agricultural products could be a contribution to the EU. In comparison, Slovaks put a considerable emphasis on their hard work and diligence, Poles accentuate their traditions, moral values, religion and quality agricultural products, while Hungarians take more pride, than Czechs, in their culture and arts, hard work, diligence, science and technical development.

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