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SNK European Democrats

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SNK European Democrats
SNK Evropští demokraté
LeaderZdeňka Marková
Merger ofSNK Union of Independents
European Democrats
HeadquartersMalá Štěpánská 7, Prague
IdeologyLiberal conservatism
Political positionCentre to centre-right
European Parliament groupEPP-ED (2004–2009)
ColoursBlue, Yellow
Chamber of Deputies
0 / 200
0 / 81
European Parliament
0 / 21
Regional councils
8 / 675
Governors of the regions
0 / 13
Regional coalitions
2 / 13

The SNK European Democrats (Czech: SNK Evropští demokraté) is a political party in the Czech Republic, led by Zdeňka Marková. The first regular chairperson of this party was Jana Hybášková. The party was created in January 2006 by the merger of two Czech non-parliamentary political parties – SNK Union of Independents (Czech: SNK sdružení nezávislých), led by the former Foreign Minister Josef Zieleniec, and the European Democrats (Czech: Evropští demokraté), led by Jan Kasl, the former Mayor of Prague.[1]

European Democrats[edit]

The European Democrats were founded by Kasl, who resigned from his post as Mayor of Prague in protest at the policies of the Civic Democratic Party (ODS), Prague's municipal government. In the 2002 Prague municipal election, the ED won 15 seats, finishing in second place and becoming the main opposition party.[2] In the 2004 Czech regional elections, the party won three seats running by itself in the Karlovy Vary Region, two in coalition with STAN in the Zlín Region, and one on a joint list with SNK in the Central Bohemian Region. In Senate elections the same year, they won one seat out of 27, in the Karlovy Vary district.[3] Kasl remained the party's chairman until the party merged with SNK Union of Independents in 2006.

SNK Union of Independents[edit]

The SNK Union of Independents was a small liberal-conservative party (registered as a 'movement' (hnutí) by the Czech authorities), founded in 2000 in order to help various non-party affiliated town mayors take part in regional assembly elections. The party won two seats in the Senate elections in 2002.

Cooperation and merger[edit]

In the 2004 European Parliament election, the European Democrats and SNK Union of Independents stood on a joint ticket, winning 11.02% of the vote with three MEPs elected: two members of SNK (Josef Zieleniec and Tomáš Zatloukal) and one European Democrat (Jana Hybášková).[citation needed]

Merger negotiations began immediately after the positive results in the 2004 elections, and in February 2006 the two parties merged to become SNK European Democrats (SNK ED), a pro-European, liberal-conservative party.[citation needed] The extended delay to the merger was because, according to Czech law, "if two parties unite to form a new party then they would lose their right to the money for their mandates" (950 000 CZK per senator per year and around 12 000 000 CZK for all their seats in Prague's municipal government), funds which were crucial for the forthcoming parliament elections. Instead of appointing a chairman, the unified party was led by former Foreign Minister Josef Zieleniec as the "political leader" and Kasl as Executive Vice Chairman. European Democrat members who did not join the new party later renamed the rump party as United Democrats - Association of Independents.

There were subsequently tensions between former SNK and ED members and a dispute over funding, when Social Democrat Finance Minister Bohuslav Sobotka refused to pay out the money for ED's seats in Prague's municipal government (around 15 000 000 CZK), despite declarations from the Czech Ombudsman, and the Supreme Administrative and Constitutional Court that ED had the right to these funds. In the 2006 general election, the SNK European Democrats received 2.1% of the vote and failed to have any representatives elected.[citation needed]

Jana Hybášková, elected as an MEP, became the party's first regular chair.[citation needed]

Election results[edit]

  • 2002 Chamber of Deputies: SNK – 2.78% – no seats
  • 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 seats
  • 2006 Senate: no seats
  • 2008 Senate: no seats

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Sdružení nezávislých kandidátů se sloučilo s Evropskými demokraty". Radio Prague International (in Czech). 12 December 2005. Retrieved 6 March 2024.
  2. ^ "Výsledky hlasování". volby.cz (in Czech). Retrieved 6 March 2024.
  3. ^ "Senátní volby vyhrála ODS, ČSSD bez zisku". Novinky.cz (in Czech). Borgis. 13 November 2004. Retrieved 6 March 2024.

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