Antanas Guoga on the future of Lithuanian politics

Antanas Guoga
DELFI / Karolina Pansevič

Currently serving as an MEP for Lithuania A. Guoga predicts that the Social Democrats will enter Seimas with 37 mandates, Homeland Union-Lithuanian Christian Democrats (TS-LKD) with 35 mandates and the Lithuanian Peasant and Green Union will have to be satisfied with third place and 30 mandates. The new Seimas should likely include the Labour Party which could have 10 or more mandates. The fate of the remaining parties is less clear.

As far as his previous party, the Liberal Movement is concerned, the politician believes that their chances are 50/50, with a 50% chance of entering Seimas with around 5% votes earned and a 50% chance they will fail to gather even that many. It will apparently be a particular struggle to enter the second round in single mandate electoral districts as people will gravitate more toward Conservative candidates now. The draw of Lithuanian Peasant and Greens Union (LVŽS), as well as the Social Democrat Party should not be disregarded either in that regard.

Guoga speculated that much of the Russian vote may migrate from the Labour Party, now that its patriarch Viktor Uspaskich has reduced his presence, toward the Electoral Action of Poles in Lithuania whose renaming into the Electoral Action of Poles in Lithuania-Christian Families’ Union could in fact improve their prospects. A number of independent candidates are also apparently likely to enter Seimas, up to around eight.

The MEP notes that it is very possible that parties will struggle to build an adequate majority coalition. The combination of TS-LKD and LVŽS may not be enough, particularly if the Liberal Movement fails to enter Seimas. This is particularly problematic with LVŽS ruling out cooperation with the Order and Justice Party as well as the Labour Party. Guoga believes there is a chance for a “rainbow” coalition with the Conservatives and Social Democrats uniting arising, but only under the condition of working in the interests of the state, not party interests. According to him the most likely variant remains a government based on TS-LKD and LVŽS cooperating. There will of course be hurdles to pass and they would need assistance from the Liberal Movement and independent candidates, but it remains the most likely variant, particularly given the expected support from the Presidential Palace. The politician does not rule out it devolving into “a serious mess.”

When asked about his future plans and the chances of a return to Lithuanian politics Guoga responded that “If the President or the PM, whatever the cabinet, offered something meaningful, I would agree. I really have no goal of staying in the EP or vegetating for a long time. I am not attached to this post, it isn’t necessary for me, neither financially, nor any other way. We’ll see how the Seimas will form, perhaps I will be useful somewhere, perhaps a vice-minister position would suffice.”

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