Prime Minister secures support for his cabinet in Friday's confidence vote
The Czech Republic's seven-month long government crisis may be coming to an end. The balance of power in the lower house, which has been deadlocked since the June general elections, swung in favor of the centre right coalition government on Tuesday. The prime minister announced that he had made a tolerance-deal with two rebel Social Democrat deputies, which would enable his cabinet to win Friday's crucial confidence vote in Parliament.
But will this give the country a stable government capable of pushing through its pro-reform policy programme of tax changes, public spending cuts, and health and pension reforms? Political analysts are skeptical. The two left-wing rebels have only agreed to tolerate the centre right cabinet in order to bring the country's "prolonged political agony to an end." They did not promise to support the government in future votes.
Mr. Paroubek on Tuesday responded with anger to the news, calling the two deputies traitors and saying that the deal smacked of corruption. The government crisis may soon be over but whatever lies ahead for the Czech Republic it is unlikely to be a time of stability.