SNK European Democrats
|Headquarters||Malá Štěpánská 7, Prague|
|European Parliament group||EPP-ED (2004–2009)|
|Chamber of Deputies||
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The SNK European Democrats (Czech: SNK Evropští demokraté), is a small liberal conservative political party in the Czech Republic, led by Zdeňka Marková. The first regular chairperson of this party was Jana Hybášková. It was created in January 2006 by two small Czech parties – SNK Union of Independents (Czech: SNK sdružení nezávislých) led by former Foreign Minister Josef Zieleniec and European Democrats (Czech: Evropští demokraté) led by former Mayor of the City of Prague Jan Kasl.
The European Democrats were founded in summer 2002 by former Mayor of the City of Prague Jan Kasl. He resigned on his post in protest at the policy of Civic Democratic Party in Prague's municipal government. It was founded above all as a Prague party (or no more than a party for the bigger cities). In the 2002 elections for Prague's municipal government, the European Democrats reached 15 seats (2nd place) and became the strongest opposition party. In the 2004 Senate elections, ED gained 1 seat (of 27 elected). The party had only ever Jan Kasl as its chairman until it merged with SNK.
SNK Union of Independents
Cooperation and Merge
Although these two parties merged in 2006 they had already cooperated in coalition in the 2004 European Parliament Elections. They gained 11% of the vote and elected three MEPs – Josef Zieleniec, Jana Hybášková and Tomáš Zatloukal.
In February 2006 these two parties merged after long negotiations about terms of uniting in one new party. The result was that members of European democrats went over to the Union of Independents and this was renamed SNK European democrats. According to uniting treaties between SNK and ED this hasn't any formal chairman. But it was led by Josef Zieleniec as political leader (and primary face of parliament elections although he wasn't candidate) and Jan Kasl as executive vice chairman.
New party claimed itself as an alternative for voters which were tired by main political parties. But because of some tension between former SNK and ED members in new party and missing funds SNK European democrats' campaign in Chamber of Deputies was unsuccessful. They gained 2.1% of the vote, becoming the first non-parliamentary party.
After heavy failure in 2006 Chamber of Deputies elections was called the Republic assembly (the highest executive body of the party) and new and regular chairwoman was elected Jana Hybášková – one of party's MEPs.
- 2002 Chamber of Deputies: SNK – 2,78% – no seat
- 2002 Senate: SNK – 2 seats, ED – no seats
- 2002 Prague's municipal government: SNK – no seats, ED – 15 seats
- 2004 Senate: SNK – 1 seat, ED – 1 seat
- 2004 European Parliament: SNK and ED in coalition – 11,02% – 3 seats
- 2006 Chamber of Deputies: 2,1% – no seat
- 2006 Senate: no seat
- 2008 Senate: no seat
- These negotiations began immediately after success in 2004 European Parliament Elections.
- This solution was chosen because according to Czech law if these two parties would simply unite in new party they'll lose their droit on money for their mandates (950 000 CZK per senator per year and around 12 000 000 CZK for all seats in Prague municipal government). These money were crucial for incoming parliament elections.
- Minister of Finances from Czech Social Democratic Party Bohuslav Sobotka refused to pay out money for ED's seats in Prague municipal government (around 15 000 000 CZK) although Czech Ombudsman, Supreme Administrative and Constitutional Court had declared that ED have droit for this money. SNK ED are litigating for the money.
- Liberal conservatism
- European People's Party–European Democrats
- Liberal democracy
- Liberalism worldwide
- List of liberal parties
- SNK – European Democrats official site