Leftist wins elec­tion, vows to back the euro

The Washington Times Daily - - World -

BRATISLAVA | Slo­vak leftist leader Robert Fico pledged Sun­day to de­fend the euro af­ter his party won the solid ma­jor­ity in par­lia­men­tary elec­tions dom­i­nated by voter anger over cor­rup­tion.

Mr. Fico, whose Smer-sd party picked up 83 seats in the 150mem­ber par­lia­ment, will be the first leader to have the over­all ma­jor­ity since Slo­vakia gained in­de­pen­dence in 1993.

He said his plans to tax the rich and boost so­cial wel­fare would not be at odds with the euro­zone drive to end the debt cri­sis.

“The pro­gram will be proEuro­pean,” said Mr. Fico, who ush­ered Slo­vakia into the euro­zone dur­ing his first stint as premier from 2006 to 2010. “We want the euro­zone pre­served and the euro as a strong Euro­pean cur­rency.”

His party won 44.4 per­cent of the vote, well ahead of the out­go­ing SDKU-DS, which saw its sup­port dwin­dle to just over 6 per­cent.

Slo­vak Pres­i­dent Ivan Gas­parovic said Sun­day he would ask Mr. Fico to form a gov­ern­ment, but gave no date.

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