Greece’s election – Syriza wins © the Economist, January 25th, 2015
GREECE will have a new prime minister, and Europe its first anti-austerity government, following elections on January 25th. Preliminary results show that Syriza, a left-wing party led by Alexis Tsipras, has won handsomely, claiming around 36% of the vote, an eight-percentage-point lead over the New Democracy party of Antonis Samaras, the outgoing prime minister. Syriza’s support leapt by nine percentage points compared with the 2012 election result; the biggest loser was PASOK, a centre-left party and member of the current governing coalition. Syriza fell just short of an absolute majority, winning 149 seats in the 300-seat parliament. Mr Tsipras seems set to form a governing coalition with the small right-wing Independent Greeks party, which won 13 seats. In a victory speech in Athens, Mr Tsipras told supporters that the “troika” of institutions (the European Commission, the European Central Bank and the IMF) that oversees Greece’s bail-out programme was a thing of the past. That may be a promise he cannot deliver on. But he has been given a mandate to try.