Ukraine’s 2019 elections: Political bidding underway

Author : Yaroslav Konoshchuk

The latest polls show that Tymoshenko would win the presidential race, against this backdrop,  Bloc of Petro Poroshenko is predisposing National Front to consolidate
11:40, 26 March 2018

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112 Agency

If we believe the public opinion polls (we should not absolutize the figures, but rather look at the trends they show), Yulia Tymoshenko would now win the presidential race gaining almost 25% of the votes in the first round. Oleh Lyashko is in second place – 15.5% and Anatoly Hrytsenko would get 12.5%. The incumbent president of Ukraine would gain the support of only about 10% of voters. This is what the results of a study conducted by a respected Kyiv International Institute of Sociology. Compared with the results of the autumn of 2017, the head of state lost almost half of the support, while the popularity of Tymoshenko is growing. However, more than one-third of Ukrainians have not decided on their choice, which means that presidential candidates have room for maneuver.

Related: Tymoshenko: If Poroshenko wants to fight with me, I suggest doing it personally

Although it looks like "Fatherland" is already anticipating the victory of Tymoshenko. Our own sources in the faction say that the positive dynamics of Yuliya Tymoshenko would continue. The "Fatherland" supposes that the incumbent president might run for the presidency in 2019. "Poroshenko has now become a second-tier candidate, and Lyashko is likely to come to the second round," our interlocutor noted, recognizing that the ratings could be influenced by the percent of those undecided voters.

Our source in "Fatherland" adds that the coalition is continuing negotiations on holding early parliamentary elections in order to maintain its situation in the parliament and strengthen its position with the new head of state (if he is an opposition candidate).

"We know for sure that negotiations on the distribution of districts in early elections and cooperation between the coalition factions continue, although it is not clear why they are going to implement their plans taking into account the current ratings," our interlocutor notes.

Related: Peacemaker site adds Tymoshenko to list of violators

In turn, our sources in the "National Front" faction note that the negotiations on integration and cooperation with the “Bloc of Petro Poroshenko” (BPP) continue, but so far they have not reached any result.

"They continue to predispose us to the consolidation; in fact, they use threats, blackmail, hinting that in case of our persistence we might lose our positions in power. They (BPP, - Ed.) say we our rating is 1.5% and, accordingly, we have no chances at the elections in terms of our self-participation," our interlocutor claims.

He also doubted the possibility of the "National Front" rebranding. But the prospects of the coalition parties are very vague. "One of the initiators of the early Verkhovna Rada elections said that soon we (BPP and "National Front" – Ed.) would fight for some 1%. Of course, he exaggerates the situation, but so far the trends are depressing," our source adds.

The presidential nomination of former Prime Minister Arseniy Yatsenyuk is still unlikely (even considering a large number of those who have not decided).

Related: Merkel congratulated Putin on his win in elections

And how about the rival friends in the coalition? A group of bloggers who sympathize with the president assured that the difference between the rating of the current head of state and Yulia Tymoshenko "is only a few percents, and the elections would be held in a year, everything could change." However, it should be noted that in the last six months the popularity of both the president and his political force demonstrates a negative dynamics. According to sources from the coalition factions assure that some influential parliamentarians from BPP continue to convince their "Number One" to consent to early parliamentary elections in order to maintain the positions in the parliament. And early elections might strengthen their positions during the “bidding” if the new head of state becomes an oppositionist.

However, as noted by the deputies interviewed by us, they need a quality administrative resource to achieve the result, "this point is problematic, although our work is underway."

Related: People’s Front intends to run in presidential, parliament elections 2019, - Yatsenyuk

Despite the ratings, "Number One" candidate remained determined to his second term.

"For today the probability of his second term is 60%, and the final decision will be made in May or June," our sources in coalition factions say.

They plan to persuade the voters with the continuation of friendship with the West and the implementation of the Euro-Atlantic integration course. The visa-free status is already forgotten, so the thesis "Joining NATO in 10 years" was launched. One of these days, Poroshenko said that "in the next 10 years Ukraine will join NATO," economic growth will be achieved, which would ensure raising wages, increasing welfare, and the roads repairing.

Related: Klitschko tops Ukraine's Mayor rating

In addition, Bankova expects for more effective work on the part of the Prosecutor General and plans to rotate the districts heads and some regional administrations heads. However, an important condition for the realization of all these plans is support from the West, including the financial one. By the way, lately, the country has some problems with it. Yes, Prime Minister Groysman, who was previously considered to be an obedient performer, is gradually increasing his weight in political bidding.

A decisive year before the elections, in which the candidates would try to persuade the undecided electorate to their side, is ahead.

This column does not necessarily reflect the opinion of the editorial board or 112.International and its owners.

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