Center-right New Democracy (ND) party of Kyriakos Mitsotakis is the clear winner of the Greek general elections held on Sunday.
With almost all votes counted, ND gets 40.55 percent, followed by SYRIZA at 17.84 percent. PASOK is at 11.85 percent with the Communist Party follows at 7.69 percent.
According to the results, ND will get 158 seats and an absolute majority in the 300-strong Greek Parliament.
Greece is facing a new historic chapter, and New Democracy has been given a strong mandate to proceed with major reforms faster, Mitsotakis said on Sunday evening, with the majority of votes counted in the repeat elections.
“Today we will briefly enjoy our victory but as of tomorrow, we are rolling our sleeves up and getting to work,” Mitsotakis said in a brief message at party headquarters.
“This freely given support only increases my responsibility to respond to peoples’ hopes. I personally feel an even stronger obligation to serve the country with all my abilities,” Mitsotakis added.
The electoral law under which Sunday’s poll took place grants the winner as many as 50 bonus seats in Greece’s 300-member parliament.
Mitsotakis, who excluded the possibility of trying to form a coalition government after his victory in May, says he needs at least 158 seats to rule comfortably and be able to push through “ambitious” reforms.
Mitsotakis thrashes opposition in the repeat Greek elections
Sunday’s vote was a humiliating defeat for SYRIZA, which lost more than 30 MPs. “This result is negative for democracy and society,” Tsipras said, referring to far-right parties winning votes. For Syriza, he said, a “great and creative historic circle had closed.”
“We have to look upon that with pride,” he said.
Three fringe parties of the extreme right and one of the extreme left are the newcomers in Greek politics.
The surprise according to the results is a new extreme right-wing formation called The Spartans which gets between 4.64 and 12 seats in the new Parliament.
The grouping was catapulted from relative obscurity after support from Ilias Kasiadiaris, the frontman of the now-banned Golden Dawn far-right party. His own party was barred from the elections and he endorsed the Spartans from jail.
Greek Solution, a nationalist, pro-Russia party formed by former journalist and TV salesman Kyriakos Velopoulos, gets between 4.44 percent and 12 seats.
Niki, or Victory party gets 3.69 percent and 10 seats.
Plefsi Eleftherias, or Passage to Freedom, gets 3.11 percent and 8 seats. Its leader Zoe Konstantopoulou was the parliament speaker under SYRIZA.
MeRA25 anti-austerity party of Tsipras’s former maverick finance minister Yanis Varoufakis, gets below the 3 percent threshold to be represented in Parliament.
The fact that MeRA25 did not manage to enter Parliament after this electoral contest “is the lesser of two evils,” said party leader Yanis Varoufakis in his statement on Sunday evening after the party failed to cross the 3% threshold.
What is most important is “tonight’s lament of the Left, as we failed to transform ten years’ worth of resistance to disastrous memorandum policies, and we also failed to prevent the transformation of people’s wrath into a far-right movement.”
Varoufakis thanked all supporters, and promised that the party will work tirelessly “for the reconstruction of the pluralistic, ecological, unifying and selfless Left.”
A party needs to gain more than 3 percent to achieve parliamentary representation.
Mitsotakis called for a stable government for the next four years from the polling station in Kifissia, where he voted on Sunday.
“Citizens and democracy are the focus today, it is a day of joy and responsibility. We are voting for the second time in just a few weeks so the country can have a stable and efficient government with a four-year horizon,” he said.
The Guardian reports that Mitsotakis’ triumph is a testimony to the desire of voters to see Greece continue on a path of “normalcy” after the debt-stricken country’s brush with bankruptcy and decade-long rollercoaster crisis of bailouts and austerity.
21,634 voting centers throughout the country opened at 7 a.m. local time and closed at 7 p.m. ND won May 21 vote with a 20-point lead over main opposition SYRIZA, a margin Greece has not seen since the 1970s. But it fell short of the majority needed to rule alone due to a proportional voting system in place for that poll.