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Election date in limbo

By Messenger Staff
Thursday, June 26
For the first time in Georgian election history, a second round election has become necessary. The date of the run-off is what has caused much speculation. The United National Movement is demanding that the Central Election Commission (CEC) to announce the date immediately. The CEC meanwhile states that it will announce the election date when all the appeals and remarks in terms of the local-elections are considered and addressed. 8 cities and 13 municipalities are scheduled to elect mayors and governors

Some suggests that the second round will be scheduled at the end of July. The UNM suggests July 20 for the run-off. The Georgian Dream announced that it trusted the CEC and that the United National Movement was trying to discredit the commission and the government.

There are several reasons why the UNM wants to postpone the run-off date. The most significant is that the party thinks that a later date will increase their chances in the election. The end of July is usually a politically indifferent season for Georgia, as most of the population leaves for vacation. Presumably, the UNM thinks that it will manage to consolidate its voters when the coalition fails to manage it. The experience of other countries illustrates that the turnout for the run-off is always less compared to the first one. Therefore, the UNM plans to attract not only its direct supporters, but also those who voted for the non-parliamentary opposition during the first round.

Most analysts think however that it is unlikely the UNM will win any seats where the candidates run against the GD candidates. The population is mostly inclined to vote for the GD rather than the UNM. Dissatisfaction towards the previous administration is still strong in the country.

However, in such consequences where the GD and non-parliamentary candidates are in opposition, the population might vote for the non-parliamentary candidate that will push for more democratic developments in the country.