More than three fifths (61%) of those polled generally take a critical view of how parties behave, of which 41% generally dislike the behaviour of parties and 20% say that the situation makes them disgusted. On the other hand, 27% of respondents are critical of some parties only and only 1% expresses general satisfaction with how political parties behave. The performance of individual parties in the Chamber of Deputies is assessed as follows: the best evaluation is given to the CSSD – assessed favourably by over a half of respondents (54%).

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Compared to the pre-election period, post-election political, economic and general expectations of citizens were somewhat more pessimistic following the announcement of the final election results. This shift stems from the absolutely clear post-election disappointment among supporters of the ODS, 90% of whom expected the victory of their party and therefore took a very positive view of the post-election development.

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In its post-election survey, the Public Opinion Research Centre posed a few questions examining the decision-making process of voters. More than a fifth of voters made their decision to vote shortly before the election. A further 11% say to have made their decision in the course of May, i.e. approximately a month before the election. An overwhelming majority of voters - 62% - decided (not) to vote well in advance.

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In its post-election survey, the Public Opinion Research Centre, inter alia, on shifts in voter support. This print information is based on a comparison between the real decisions of respondents in the recent election and responses about which party they voted in the June 1998 election to the Chamber of Deputies. Our findings indicate that over a tenth (11%) of those who now voted for the KSCM, had supported the CSSD in the previous election.

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In late June and early July, the Public Opinion Research Centre focused on citizen satisfaction with the results of the election to the Chamber of Deputies. Over a quarter (28%) of respondents expressed that they were roughly half satisfied with the results. As regards those who provided a more exact opinion, the satisfied outweighed the dissatisfied in a ratio of 31% to 25%. 16% of respondents were unable to answer.

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The results from early June show that 56% of respondents take a critical view of how parties behave, of which 34% generally dislike the behaviour of parties and 22% say that the situation makes them disgusted. On the other hand, 27% of those polled are critical of some parties only and 4% express general satisfaction with how political parties behave. Relative satisfaction with how parties behave has been reported among people with good living standards and supporters of the ODS and the CSSD.

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During the last two months before the parliamentary election when the election campaign was becoming more intensive, there was a modest increase in the number of respondents (to 48%) saying that they find the campaign annoying. In contrast, fewer respondents held the opinion that the campaign is necessary and influences the election outcome. Political activities of respondents did not change before the election.

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Shortly before the parliamentary election, only 14% of respondents classified themselves as staunch supporters. On the other hand, 30% of those polled would vote a certain party just because it annoys them the least. The respondents almost universally agree that they vote for a certain party because they identify with the party ideology (86%), the party programme (85%) and because they place trust in the party leaders (78%).

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In its June survey conducted very shortly before the election to the Chamber of Deputies, the Public Opinion Research Centre investigated who would be the most acceptable prime minister. The respondents expressed their opinions on nine potential candidates for the post. Although Stanislav Gross (68%) and Petra Buzková (65%), both from the CSSD, are assessed even more positively than Vladimír Špidla, Czech citizens find Mr Špidla very acceptable – shortly before the election, a half of those polled would welcome him as the prime minister.

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From the end of January onwards, the public considered the ODS and the CSSD to be the undisputed champions in the election to the Chamber of Deputies of the Czech Republic’s Parliament – these two parties kept consolidating their position during the following months, to the detriment of the Coalition, which was for a long time, until April, the third most successful group in the election. Shortly before the election, the loss in the popularity of the Coalition meant that the party preferences equalled those of the KSCM, which long ranked fourth and whose changes were seen as very stable during the pre-election six months.

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