Jiri Paroubek says grand coalition not in cards

The chairman of the Social Democratic Party, Jiri Paroubek, made a brief public appearance Monday afternoon, following a meeting with Civic Democratic Party leader, Mirek Topolanek. Mr. Paroubek told the press that a grand coalition between his Social Democrats and the right-of-center Civic Democrats is no longer a realistic way out of the political stalemate. Until now, Mr. Paroubek has suggested a grand coalition between the country's two largest political parties as a viable alternative to early elections. The Civic Democrats have dismissed this option consistently since the June elections ended in a deadlock.