ND enjoys nearly 19%-point lead over ruling party in ballots cast by expatriates; prison precincts show SYRIZA dominance

30 May 2019
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Main opposition New Democracy enjoyed a comfortable difference from ruling SYRIZA in terms of expatriate Greeks’ vote in Sunday’s European Parliament election, with the center-right party garnering 33.89 percent compared its hard left rival’s 15.28 percent.

The votes were cast in EU member-states by registered Greek voters, something that is still unavailable for general elections, such as the one now on the horizon for July 7.

Nearly 15,000 Greek citizens voted from specific polling stations in EU countries, nearing a whopping 80 percent turnout.

The Communist Party of Greece (KKE) was third, in terms of votes cast outside Greece, at 14.06 percent, followed by the social democrat/socialist Kinima Allaghis party, at 8.58 percent. Surprisingly, centrist Potami earned 4.95 percent, while in Greece the party fizzled to near obscurity.

Ultra-nationalist Golden Dawn was given 3.58 percent, while Yanis Varoufakis’ new MeRA25 (Diem25) picked up a respectable inaugural showing of 3.25 percent.

While roughly three out of 10 expatriate Greek voters casting ballots opted for ND – which won a plurality of votes in all but seven out of Greece’s 52 prefectures – the situation the exact opposite in the country’s prisons, where many native-born inmates retain the right to vote.

SYRIZA posted easy victories in Greece’s correctional facilities, such as in Athens-area Korydallos, the biggest penitentiary.

Specifically, 62.5 percent (40 votes) of inmates at Korydallos’ psychiatric ward opted for SYRIZA, to 12.5 percent (eight votes) for ND. Inmates in the penitentiary’s warehousing unit picked SYRIZA by 30 percent, to 20 percent for ND.

The result was more impressive in a prison outside the central city of Larissa, where 84.78 of eligible voters (117) opted for SYRIZA, to just 6.52 percent (nine votes) for ND.

Unfazed by the Prespa agreement, inmates in northern Greece’s correctional facilities also overwhelming voted for the ruling party. At the Diavata prison and holding facility, in Thessaloniki, for instance, out of 202 inmates eligible to vote, 175 cast ballots. SYRIZA picked up 78.66 percent of the votes to ND’s 5.49 percent.

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