Final Word from Monday, January 24, 2011

Rumors are starting to swirl that the Constitutional Courtwill soon strike down the Prague municipal elections on thegrounds that the gerrymandering of the voting districts wasunconstitutional. As the date approaches for the court decision,Zdeněk Tůma will no doubt again be elevated by HNand other publications to "hot favorite" to become Praguemayor. Commentators will also start debating whether the repeatelections are the beginning of the end of ODS as a politicalparty. As is often the case with the Constitutional Court,the real question might be which way the political winds blowin Brno, not what the Czech Constitution actually says on agiven topic. If the elections are indeed annulled, opponents ofthe grand coalition at Prague city hall will rejoice, but if theirtrue interest is honest democracy, they should neverthelessdemand that the Court rule strictly on legal grounds. And notin reaction to a lobbying effort by the Klaus crowd on the onehand, or the Havel-Bakala-Pokorný bloc on the other.

Glossary of difficult words

to swirl - to move in a twisting or spiraling pattern;

to gerrymander - to manipulate the boundaries of a voting district so as to favor one party or class;

to annul - to declare invalid.


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