The SPOLU coalition is the only alternative to the Slovak scenario

Interview with TOP 09 Chairwoman Markéta Pekarova Adamová.

12. 6. 2024

Vlastimil Válek, the Minister of Health from your party, wrote on his Facebook profile: "Together we have proven that values-based politics can succeed." Is this really how your result in the European elections can be interpreted?

Together, we are the only ones who can defeat the ANO movement, which represents a very populist policy, where you do not know what is valid the next day, because they change their promises and opinions very often and are absolutely inconsistent.

Just a few years ago, Andrej Babiš was in favour of the euro, in favour of accepting migrants because they would be useful to him in his companies - now he is the biggest opponent of the euro and of migration. Here you see how there is no consistency, I could give many examples of this.

We, on the other hand, are clearly anchored, we have solutions to problems that the whole of society is dealing with. We are the only alternative for voters who do not want to be ruled by radical forces and who do not want to see Slovak or Hungarian scenarios in our country.

Overall, the parties in the governing coalition lost four seats in Brussels. Is this not alarming?

It is a fact that we need to analyse, we need to say how we can learn from this result. But given the crisis years we are in and the fact that no government before us has dealt with a situation as fundamental as the war near us and the impact it is having on us - whether in the form of the energy crisis or the influx of refugees - I think it is a decent result.

Especially for the Together coalition, it is a very solid result, because we are only one mandate weaker than the winner.

The fact is that TOP 09 is the only governing party that achieved its election promises. It won a seat for Luděk Niedermayer and also won one for a newcomer, incumbent MP Ondřej Kolář. Do you consider this a success?

Yes, I consider it a success. We have very competent candidates, and we always offer voters really experienced people who solve actual problems.

Once again, I want to thank the voters, not only for electing our two MEPs, but everyone on the Together coalition's candidate list, and in general for the fact that more people came to the polls.

I think it is also an interesting factor that 8% more people did not miss the opportunity compared to the turnout five years ago. And that they want to decide who represents us in the European Parliament, because that is where roughly 70% of the legislation that we then adopt in the Czech Republic is decided.

This is extremely important for us, it has an impact and people are probably increasingly understanding the importance of making decisions in these elections.

Marek Hanč, a marketing expert who used to work for the ANO movement, said smaller coalition parties could not get into the European Parliament on their own and that TOP 09 is in a state of clinical death. Are you really losing your own face as a party in the government coalition?

This is rather the wish of those who do not wish us well, or rather are our opponents, but it is the other way around. TOP 09 is a very solid part and force on our political scene, and we are showing it with the results.

I am sure that if we had run on our own, we would have been represented in the European Parliament, but it turns out that cooperation makes sense. Those who criticise it do so because they would be happy if we did not work together, if we were unable to reach an agreement.

We are showing that we are capable of agreement, that we are close to finding common ground, and even if we have different views on some things, we will be transparent with people up front, it is not as if we are ashamed of it.

We don't agree on everything in the family either, but we can stick together, and that is important in political parties and coalitions too, because that is the only way we can get more through afterwards.

For me, the Together coalition is clearly a functional project, not just for one election. We have already won not only the parliamentary elections, but also the Senate elections, and we will continue the Together coalition in this year's Senate elections, in a number of districts and also in a number of regions.

The ANO movement has not only improved by one MEP seat in the European elections, but has also begun to identify possible coalition partners for the parliamentary elections. How do you assess this situation?

Even in many previous European elections, there was a surprise, someone who subsequently failed to translate their result into national parliamentary elections. I can name that the Freedmen once succeeded in this way, now we see the Oath and Motorists grouping.

I don't take this lightly, especially on social media today even a monothematic party can succeed. The main theme of this entity was simply in internal combustion engines.

I think we have to be more demanding as citizens and voters, that we must not be satisfied with one single issue, because the European Parliament deals with hundreds of issues that often have a much greater impact on our lives than this one issue.

However, I do not take this lightly, and I see it as meaning that we must also be able to reach out, for example, to the young generation from which the supporters of this body have been recruited.

Do the results of the Euro elections constitute an incentive for a more thorough review of government positions?

On behalf of the Together and TOP 09 coalition, I can say that we are not planning anything of the sort at the moment. If we wanted to make any changes, we did, as you know, there was such a change in TOP 09, but for us there will be no such demand towards our coalition partners.

And for the rest of the coalition?

I cannot and do not want to speak for either Ivan Bartos or Vítek Rakušan. They are, of course, coalition partners, but not within the narrower coalition that we have within Together.