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The Businessman Robert Golob defeated Prime Minister Jansa

Robert Golob won with 34.5%, compared to 23.5% for Orbán’s ally and Trump admirer.

Less than three months ago, Robert Golob, former president of a solar energy company, had no party to contest the elections. Now he is on the brink of becoming Slovenia’s prime minister after the small ecologist party, which he took control of, won more than a third of the vote in Sunday’s parliamentary elections. It is the latest setback for the populist right in Europe.

Golob’s Freedom Movement (formerly the Green Action Party) won 34.5% of the vote, far ahead of Prime Minister Janez Jansa’s conservative Slovenian Democratic Party, which won 23.5%. Anger over the government’s crackdown on civil liberties propelled the charismatic 55-year-old engineer to the post of head of government in the country of two million people.

“Our goal has been achieved: a victory that will allow us to bring the country back to freedom,” Golob told supporters on election night, via a video call from his home, where he is in isolation after being infected with covid. -19.

return to normality
Recognized for his shoulder-length curly hair, a style he says he’s had since his youth, Golob is practically a newcomer to politics. During the campaign, he toured the country by bus and his team spread their messages and ads through Facebook and Instagram. He declined to use Twitter to “avoid the temptation of quick fingers”. Golob promised to restore “normality”, having dubbed the elections a “referendum on democracy”.

In Jansa’s last term (who returned to power in 2020, after having already headed the government from 2004 to 2008 and from 2012 to 2013), thousands of protesters held regular protests, accusing him of using the pandemic to attack the freedom of media and the judiciary, undermining the rule of law. An ally of the Hungarian Prime Minister, the nationalist Viktor Orbán, and an admirer of former US President Donald Trump, Jansa has also shocked Brussels over these issues.

Golob told AFP that he wants the country to “return” to being “facing the West”. A former Secretary of State in charge of Energy, Golob also spent some time at the Georgia Institute of Technology in the US on a Fulbright fellowship. A father of three, he founded his own energy company in 2002, eventually leading GEN-I, after several mergers, which promotes solar energy. But he was not reappointed last year after the government increased its stake and became the largest shareholder.

Golob’s political inexperience has been blamed as a flaw, but analysts believe he can ally himself with a more experienced partner, the Social Democrats (who were fourth at 6.6%). Third were the Christian Democrats (6.8%) and fifth was the Left, which had 4.4%.

Source: with agencies

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