Explaining Eastern Europe: Czech Democracy Under Pressure

Issue Date July 2018
Volume 29
Issue 3
Page Numbers 65-77
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The victory of populist oligarch Andrej Babiš in October 2017 general elections and the January 2018 reelection of pro-Russian president Miloš Zeman seemed to move the Czech Republic closer to illiberal regimes such as those of Hungary and Poland. For several reasons, however, the Czech Republic may not follow the path of these two countries. Its system of constitutional checks and balance is stronger than those in Poland and Hungary, and Babiš is a pragmatist who does not want to create a deep divide between the Czech Republic and the rest of the European Union.

About the Author

Jiri Pehe is director of New York University in Prague and a political commentator. He formerly served as political advisor to Czech president Václav Havel and as director of Central European Research at Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty.

View all work by Jiri Pehe