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Everything in moderation

Keystone

Unlike on their roads, the Swiss don’t see landslides in their elections. But that’s not to say surprises don’t exist.

This content was published on October 23, 2011 - 22:15

Shifts of a few percentage points translate into slight gains or losses of seats in parliament, but rarely do these musical chairs reach double figures.

Such is the case today. The latest provisional figures, released at 9pm, show that the biggest loser, in percentage points, is the rightwing Swiss People’s Party, which dropped from 28.9% to 25.9%, a loss of seven seats.

It was the first time in 20 years that the People’s Party had failed to increase its share of the vote. Voters, disillusioned with traditional politics, shifted their backing to smaller, fledgling parties.

In second place, the centre-left Social Democrats are seen winning 18.1%, down 1.4% on 2007, though they were set to increase by one their number of seats in parliament, the only party in government to do so.

The centre-right Radicals and Christian Democrats both lost ground – and seats (four and three respectively). The Radicals’ president Fulvio Pelli (below, looking for a miracle) was on very thin ice at one point, but ended up keeping his Ticino seat in the House of Representatives by just 58 votes.

The main winners are the small Liberal Greens and the Conservative Democrats, both coming from nothing to gain nine seats.

For an analysis of these results, check out this swissinfo article and this one. Bear in mind that these figures are provisional – final results are due early on Monday.

Right, that’s all folks! Thanks for all your emails, and make sure you visit swissinfo tomorrow morning to find out what the Swiss papers have to say about the “new middle” of Swiss politics.

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