Civic Democrats say they will not back minority government

The Civic Democrats, the second-largest party in the lower house, have repeated they will not back the minority government led by prime minister and ANO leader Andrej Babiš. Their chairman, Petr Fiala, said his party would prefer instead if the prime minister intensified efforts to form a majority government.

He also reacted to the government’s proposed policy program by saying the Civic Democrats favoured lowering taxes more. The party is also opposed to the electronic cash registers system, put in place by Babiš as former finance minister, arguing the system had driven some entrepreneurs or firms out of business.

On Tuesday, the Christian Democrats, after meeting with the prime minister, said they would not support the government as they could not accept a member of the government, in this case Mr Babiš himself, who was being sought by the police to face criminal charges. In the previous lower house Mr Babiš’ immunity was waived so that he could face charges in a subsidy fraud case.

The prime minister is meeting with the heads of all parties in the lower house, seeking backing for his government ahead of a vote in January.

He has received assurances from the president he will get a second attempt to form a government should the current one fail.

Author: Jan Velinger