Lithuanian parliamentary election, 2004

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Lithuanian parliamentary election, 2004
Lithuania
2000 ←
10 October and 24 October 2004
→ 2008

All 141 seats to the Seimas
71 seats were needed for a majority
  First party Second party
  Viktor Uspaskich 1205.jpg Algirdas Brazauskas 1998.jpg
Leader Viktor Uspaskich Algirdas Brazauskas
Party Labour Social Democrats
Last election 0 seats 19 seats
Seats won 39 20
Seat change +39 +1
Popular vote 340,035 (proportional) 246,852 (proportional-coalition)
Percentage 28.40% (proportional) 20.65% (proportional-coalition)

Prime Minister before election

Algirdas Brazauskas
Social Democrats

Prime Minister-designate

Algirdas Brazauskas
Social Democrats

Coat of arms of Lithuania
This article is part of a series on the
politics and government of
Lithuania

Parliamentary elections were held in Lithuania on 10 October 2004. They were won by the newly founded Labour Party and the ruling coalition of Social Democratic Party of Lithuania and New Union (Social Liberals). Lithuanians went to the polls in the country's first parliamentary election since joining NATO and the European Union in May 2004.

In all twenty political parties contested the elections. Some 1 193 candidates stood in the 70 constituencies where the vote was proportional while some 607 stood in the 71 remaining single-member constituencies. A second round ballot was scheduled to take place on 24 October in those of the 67 constituencies where no candidate received more than half the vote.

Public opinion polls indicated that the Labour Party, founded in 2003 and headed by a wealthy Russian-born businessman Viktor Uspaskich, was likely to emerge as the largest group in the Seimas. The governing left-wing coalition "Working for Lithuania" of the Social Democrat and Social Liberal parties led by Prime Minister Algirdas Brazauskas and Seimas Speaker Arturas Paulauskas was predicted to come in second followed by the Homeland Union and the Liberal and Centre Union.

During the electoral campaign Mr. Uspaskich promised higher living standards and war on political corruption. His party's message was welcomed in rural areas where people felt they had been left behind by surging prosperity in the cities and among many urban voters who declared corruption to be their number one concern. The ruling coalition campaigned on the results of its three and a half years spent in power - a record in longevity in independent Lithuania's history. The ruling coalition promised a number of social measures such as an increase in the average salary and retirement pensions over the next four years. Both coalition parties also promised to lower the unemployment rate to 8 per cent and to increase the Lithuanian GDP by a third so that it would represent 60 per cent of the European average by 2008. On the conservative side the Homeland Union emphasised the need for a strong State to protect Lithuania from any possible threat from Russia.

Turnout was low with only 46.08 per cent of registered voters casting ballots, but well above the 25 per cent threshold required to make the vote valid.

The results of the first round of elections showed that the Labour Party had polled about 28 per cent of the vote, obtaining 22 of the 70 seats distributed by proportional election and one seat from a single-seat constituency. The coalition "Working for Lithuania" came in second, gaining slightly more than 20 per cent of the vote for 16 of the seats elected proportionally and 3 seats in the majority system. Homeland Union obtained nearly 15 per cent of the proportional vote, winning 11 seats in the nationwide constituency. The "For the Order and Justice" coalition, headed by the recently deposed President Rolandas Paksas and formed by the Liberal Democratic Party and the Lithuanian People's Union "For the Fair Lithuania", gained 11 per cent and 9 seats. The Liberal and Centre Union polled 9 per cent and gained 7 seats, while the Union of Farmers' Party and New Democracy Party coalition polled nearly 7 per cent and obtained 5 seats.

In 66 constituencies where no candidate had obtained the required majority voters returned to the polls on 24 October 2004. In this second round the Labour Party obtained 16 seats while the Homeland Union won 14 and the coalition "Working for Lithuania" 12. The Liberal and Centre Union obtained 11 seats the Union of Farmers' Party and New Democracy Party 5 while the Coalition "For the Order and Justice" and the Lithuanian Poles' Electoral Action one seat each. Six independent candidates also gained seats.[1]

Results[edit]

e • d Summary of the 10 October and 24 October 2004 Lithuanian Seimas election results[2]
Coalition Party Votes
(proportional)
% Seats
Proportional Constituency Total
Labour Party 340,035 28.4 22 17 39
Coalition of Algirdas Brazauskas and
Artūras Paulauskas "Working for Lithuania"
Social Democratic Party of Lithuania 246,852 20.7 16 15 20
New Union (Social Liberals) 11
Homeland Union (Lithuanian Conservatives) 176,409 14.8 11 14 25
Coalition of Rolandas Paksas
"For the Order and Justice"
Liberal Democratic Party 135,807 11.3 9 1 10
Lithuanian People's Union "For a Fair Lithuania"
Liberal and Centre Union 109,872 9.2 7 11 18
Peasants and New Democratic Party Union Lithuanian Peasants Party 78,902 6.6 5 5 10
New Democracy Party
Electoral Action of Poles in Lithuania 45,302 3.8 1 1 2
Christian Conservative Social Union 23,426 1.9
Lithuanian Christian Democrats 16,362 1.4
National Centre Party 5,989 0.5
Republican Party 4,326 0.4
Union of Lithuanian Socialists 3,977 0.3
Liberal Union of Lithuania 3,337 0.3
National Party Lithuanian Road 2,577 0.2
Lithuanian Nationalist Union 2,482 0.2
Independents 6 6
Invalid/blank votes 32,998
Total 1,228,653 100 70 71 141
Registered voters/turnout 2,666,196 46.1

References[edit]

  1. ^ Inter-Parliamentary Union[1], 2004.
  2. ^ Nohlen, D & Stöver, P (2010) Elections in Europe: A data handbook, p1216 ISBN 9873832956097

External links[edit]