Croatia is all set to hold presidential election on December 22, announced current Prime Minister Andrej Plenkovic. Croatia PM Plenkovic made the announcement on November 14 during a government session.
The election will witness the incumbent Kolinda Grabar-Kitarovic, a candidate of the ruling center-right Croatian Democratic Union (HDZ) go up against the candidate of the Social Democrats and former prime minister Zoran Milanovic. Two independent candidates also have solid support in the polls. An opinion poll indicates that during the first round of the vote Grabar-Kitarovic can expect the support of some 29% of voters while social democrats candidate Milanovic is a close second with 24%. While Miroslav Skoro, a popular singer who is largely seen as the candidate of the right-wing nationalist conservatives came third with 17% and the former judge Mislav Kolakusic came fourth with 14%.
The job of the president in Croatia is largely ceremonial as the president can not veto laws but still has some say in foreign policy and defense.
A dozen individuals had expressed their willingness to run for the office of president. Among them is a showbiz celebrity who was once a Playboy model. They all have to collect 10,000 signatures of citizens in the next 10 days to confirm their candidacy.
If no candidate is able to win an outright majority in the first round, the second round will take place on January 5, 2020.
The incumbent Grabar-Kitarovic, during her 5 years in office, not only had a very concrete impact on domestic policy but has been criticised for trying to promote herself through populist rhetoric. She somewhat had more impact on foreign policy, especially through her "Three Seas Initiative". The initiative is a forum of twelve states in the European Union that aims to create a regional dialogue on a variety of issues affecting the member states. The member states are Austria, Bulgaria, Croatia, Czech Republic, Estonia, Hungary, Latvia, Lithuania, Poland, Romania, Slovakia, and Slovenia.